Labour have blasted Iain Duncan Smith for claiming ‘nobody loses a penny’ under his benefit changes – despite experts saying they’ll lose thousand of pounds.
The welfare slasher made the bold claim after it was revealed Universal Credit will make up for now-axed tax credit cuts when one system replaces the other.
“Nobody will lose any money on arrival on Universal Credit from tax credits because they’re cash protected, which means there’s transitional protection,” Mr Duncan Smith told the BBC’s Andrew Marr.
“Nobody loses a penny, unlike they would have done under tax credits.”
But he neglected to say this ‘transitional protection’ will only last until a claimant’s circumstances change – then benefits will be cut.
The Institute for Fiscal Studies found 2.6 million working families will end up £1,600-a-year worse off.
Welfare payments ‘will be cut just as much as was ever intended’ by 2020, the respected think tank added.
When confronted by the figures , the work and pensions secretary was immediately forced to backtrack – admitting: “There were always points under tax credits that were more generous than universal credit.”
Shadow work and pensions secretary Owen Smith blasted the Tory minister.
“Iain Duncan Smith is completely wrong to say nobody loses a penny from his cuts to in-work support,” he said.
“Cutting Universal Credit raises £100m for the government next year and that money has to come from somewhere.
“What the Tories aren’t telling us is that the £100m – and a further £9.5 billion over the next five years – comes from the pockets of low- and middle-income families.
“That means those currently on Universal Credit face losses of up to £2,400 come April.
“Just like tax credit cuts, working families will be worse off next year and just like those cuts, Labour will fight them at every turn.”
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