Employment and Support Allowance sanctions statistics

Statistics on the number of sanctions imposed on people that receive ESA.


  1. Documents

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) replaced Incapacity Benefit and Income Support paid on the grounds of incapacity for new claims on 27 October 2008.

The latest release

The key statistic from the latest (August 2012) release is that 11,130 conditionality sanctions were imposed on Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) customers between 1 June 2011 and 31 May 2012.

Changes pre- and post-December 2012

Under the pre-December 2012 regime, ESA claimants in the Work Related Activity Group (WRAG) who fail to meet requirements are subject to an open ended sanction which is lifted when they re-comply. The sanction amount is 50% of the work related activity component which rises to 100% of the component after four weeks.

The post-December 2012 scheme changed the approach as follows:

  • the sanction has two parts: an open ended period, which is lifted when the claimant re-engages with requirements, followed by a short fixed period
  • the sanctionable amount increased to 100% of the prescribed amount for a single claimant
  • a hardship regime for ESA claimants was introduced

Publication of ESA sanctions statistics

Jobseeker’s Allowance and ESA sanction decisions statistics were released on 6 November 2013. These statistics include JSA sanction decisions under the new JSA sanctions regime implemented from 22 October 2012 and ESA sanction decisions covering the period since October 2008.

Contacts and more information

There is contact information and more about DWP statistics on the Statistics at DWP page.

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