David Cameron to halve time EU migrants can claim benefits4 August 2014
New immigrants from the EU will only be able to claim welfare payments for three months under new plans by David Cameron.
The prime minister has announced the further tightening of the rules for new arrivals claiming benefits, saying that the “magnetic pull” of UK benefits had to be addressed so people came for the right reasons and the rules “put Britain first”.
“Taken together, this is about building a different kind of Britain – a country that is not a soft touch but a place to play your part: a nation where those who work hard can get on,” he says.
Ministers have been reluctant to say how many people are likely to be affected by the benefit curbs but have claimed the changes could save £500m over five years.
However, the Office for Budget Responsibility distanced itself from the £500m figure, saying it was an estimate that related to a wider package of benefit curbs and compliance checks announced in March’s Budget.
The measure comes just six months after fresh controls were imposed to make EU immigrants wait three months to get jobseeker’s allowance after entering the country and then limiting claims to six months. The rule changes were subsequently extended to child tax credit and child benefit.