Withdrawals to claim LHA (Oh no… not again!!!)

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    Andreas
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    Having read the numerous (and fairly inconclusive) posts relating to this subject I am hoping someone can clarify whether the following interpretation is workable as we are currently updating our policy.

    Our initial policy was constructed on the basis that claim ‘withdrawals’ are acceptable as long as there is a week’s break (which I appreciate is not necessarily accepted by the majority of people on these forums but it is what we have chosen to go with until a Commissioner/Judge makes findings that we can all fully embrace – one way or the other!). The termination date we are using is the Sunday of the week of request (I appreciate there are many references to the paid-to-date. However based on the ‘prospective’ idea put forward on the 1999 CD quoted in G10 2008 I feel the Sunday of the week is appropriate and avoids any arguments about the termination being restrospective).

    Based on what has already been stated in relation to this issue, I understand that there is some support in the idea that claims can be treated as being made in advance when the ‘withdrawal’ (including acknowledgment of the break) and new claim are received at the same time or on the same form.

    Scenario 1. Withdrawal statement with acknowledgement of week’s break received 16 December 2008. New form issued and returned 22 December 2008. Claim terminated 21 December 2008. New claim set up with receipt date of 22 December 2008. Claim automatically begins 29 December 2008 so there is no need to worry about manipulating the claim date or treating the claim as being made in advance.

    Scenario 2. Withdrawal statement with acknowledgement of week’s break received 16 December 2008 on new claim form. Claim terminated 21 December 2008. New claim set up with receipt date of 16 December 2008 so claim automatically begins the following Monday (i.e. 22 December 2008). However, as there would be no break, we are recommending inserting a claim date of the following Monday (i.e. treating the claim as being made on 22 December 2008) in order to ensure the break and therefore enable the move to LHA.

    In my opinion the claimant has already made clear their request to end their claim so that they can be reassessed under the LHA rules. I feel there is no need to send out a new form just because the new claim is in the wrong week. I also think this adheres to the principles of ‘avoidable contact’ and KLOE and it is certainly more efficient and less costly to treat the claim as being made in advance by using a date of claim that will ensure the break.

    My question is simply is there anything that prevents us ‘manipulating’ the date of claim to ensure there is a week’s break?

    All comments, advice etc welcome.

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