Technical fault in benefits to affect up to 11,000

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Recipients of the Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) benefit will receive payments on a weekly, rather than fortnightly, basis due to “a technical issue”, the Department for Communities has announced.

A spokesperson said: “A technical issue in the benefits computer system means some Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) customers will receive weekly payments instead of their normal fortnightly payments.

“This affects customers due a fortnightly payment on Monday 15 January 2018. Instead, these customers will receive two weekly payments, on Monday 8 and 15 January.”

The spokesperson continued: “No one will miss out on a payment and customers do not need to take any further action. However, customers should take account of this split in payments while planning their financial needs and budget accordingly.

“It is expected that less than 10% of ESA claimants (up to 11,000 claimants) may be affected.”

“Normal fortnightly payments will resume on 29 January.

“The Department for Communities apologises for any inconvenience caused.”