Guidance

Decision makers’ guide: memos: staff guide

Guidance that supplements the information in the decision makers' guide.

Documents

DMG memo 21/20: Right to reside: family members and extended family members of British citizens – IS, JSA, ESA and SPC

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DMG memo 20/20: ESA: Failure to attend

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DMG memo 19/20: ESA: Mandatory reconsideration and pending appeal awards

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DMG memo 18/20: NHS Test and Trace self-Isolation payment

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DMG memo 17/20: Right to reside: persons of Northern Ireland: family members – IS, JSA, ESA and SPC

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DMG memo 16/20: Tolley lead cases guidance (revised)

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DMG memo 15/20: The social security (income and capital) (miscellaneous amendments) regulations 2020

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DMG memo 14/20: The social fund and social security (claims and payments) (amendment) regulations 2020

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DMG memo 13/20: HMRC and devolved administration coronavirus schemes and benefits other than UC

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DMG memo 12/20: Temporary absence abroad for cash sickness benefits

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DMG memo 11/20: The Troubles permanent disablement payment scheme

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DMG memo 10/20: Electronic claims for State Pension Credit

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DMG memo 08/20: Parental bereavement leave and pay - consequential amendments to social security benefits

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DMG memo 07/20: Prisoners on temporary release

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DMG memo 6/20: JSA and CA: Coronavirus (COVID-19) further measures

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DMG memo 5/20: Income Tax rates, IS/ JSA/ ESA/ SPC benefit rates and Social Security Contributions rates from April 2020

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DMG memo 4/20: ESA: Coronavirus

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DMG memo 3/20: Identifying employment/self-employment for the determination of competency for cash sickness benefits

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DMG memo 02/20: The application of article 5 of regulation (EC) no. 883/2004 of the European parliament and of the council

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DMG memo 8/19: AA, DLA (Care) & CA - effect of recent Court of Appeal decision regarding the Past Presence Test (PPT) and GSL.

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DMG memo 7/19: mixed age couples in State Pension Credit

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DMG memo 3/19: Income Tax rates, IS/JSA/ESA/SPC benefit rates and social security contributions rates from April 2019

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DMG memo 16/18: The Social Security (misc amdt no. 5) Regs 2017

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DMG memo 11/18: Incapacity Benefit reassessment - arrears of ESA(IR)

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DMG memo 1/18: ESA, work-related activity and substantial risk

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DMG memo 2/17: Carer's Allowance – meaning of 'temporary interruption' to full-time education

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DMG memo 1/17: Amendment to the Northern Ireland reciprocal arrangements Regulations in respect of Bereavement Support Payment (BSP), ESA(cont) and JSA(IB)

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DMG memo 11/13: Jobseekers (back to work schemes) Act 2013

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DMG memo JSA/IS 106: JSA and IS – Tax Credits – changes from September 2005

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DMG memo JSA/IS 64: JSA and IS – Tax Credit – change from April 2004

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DMG memo SPC 53 – housing costs – service charges

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Details

This guidance is for DWP staff who make decisions about benefits and pensions. It helps them make decisions that are accurate and consistent.

The introduction of Universal Credit and Personal Independence Payment affects the guidance DWP staff use.

DWP decision makers now use Advice for decision making (instead of the DMG) for decisions that involve:

  • Universal Credit
  • Personal Independence Payment
  • new style Jobseeker’s Allowance and ‘New Style’ Employment and Support Allowance, which are for people who are eligible for Universal Credit and are based on their National Insurance record

Why we publish this guide

We publish this guide to help people understand how we make decisions.

Information for claimants

Information for claimants about eligibility and how to claim:

Published 16 October 2013
Last updated 6 October 2020 + show all updates
  1. Added DMG memo 21/20: Right to reside: family members and extended family members of British citizens – IS, JSA, ESA and SPC.

  2. Added DMG memo 20/20: ESA: Failure to attend.

  3. Added DMG memo 19/20: ESA: Mandatory reconsideration and pending appeal awards.

  4. Added DMG memo 18/20 “NHS Test and Trace self-isolation payment”.

  5. Added DMG memo 17/20: Right to reside: persons of Northern Ireland: family members – IS, JSA, ESA and SPC.

  6. Added DMG memo 16/20. Removed DMG memo 16/19 as it is no longer relevant.

  7. Removed Memo DMG 9/19: Changes to deductions for arrears of child support maintenance (CSM) as no longer relevant.

  8. Added 'DMG memo 14/20: The social fund and social security (claims and payments) (amendment) regulations 2020' and 'DMG memo 15/20: The social security (income and capital) (miscellaneous amendments) regulations 2020'.

  9. Revised version of 'DMG memo 13/20' added.

  10. Added 'DMG memo 13/20: HMRC and devolved administration coronavirus schemes and benefits other than UC'.

  11. Added 'DMG Memo 12/20: Temporary absence abroad for cash sickness benefits'.

  12. Removed DMG memos 17/18, 12/19, 15/19, 01/20 and 09/20 as they have been incorporated into the main guidance.

  13. Added DMG memo 11/20: The Troubles permanent disablement payment scheme.

  14. Added 'DMG Memo 10/20: Electronic claims for State Pension Credit'.

  15. Added 'DMG memo 09/20: Maternity Allowance: Earnings condition'.

  16. Added 'DMG memo 08/20: Parental bereavement leave and pay - consequential amendments to social security benefits'.

  17. Added 'DMG memo 07/20: Prisoners on temporary release' and a revised version of DMG memo 06/20.

  18. Added DMG memo 6/20: JSA and CA: Coronavirus (COVID-19) further measures.

  19. Added DMG memo 5/20: Income Tax rates, IS/ JSA/ ESA/ SPC benefit rates and Social Security Contributions rates from April 2020

  20. Added DMG memo 4/20: ESA - Coronavirus.

  21. Added DMG memo 3/20: Identifying employment/self-employment for the determination of competency for cash benefits.

  22. Deleted DMG Memo 16/17: 'AA, DLA (Care), WFP & CA – Effect of recent UT decision regarding the past presence test (PPT) and GSL' as it is no longer current.

  23. These DMG memos were no longer current and have been deleted: 02/16: Right to reside - IS, JSA(IB), ESA(IR) & SPC – effect of UT decision 11/16: State Pension – Consequential Amendments 13/17: ESA: further evidence of LCW 18/17: Amendments to the JSA Hardship Regulations 23/17: October 2017 Miscellaneous Amendments 08/18: Undocumented Commonwealth Citizens Resident in the UK- JSA, ESA, IS & SPC 09/18: Scottish Carer’s Allowance supplement 13/18 - Change to the time for claiming a Sure Start Maternity Grant 14/18: State Pension Credit – Child Addition 18/18: Best Start Grants 05/19: Late application for a mandatory reconsideration 06/19: Right to reside - EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) – IS, JSA, ESA & SPC 10/19: The Children's Funeral Fund for England 11/19: Right To Reside – IS, JSA, ESA & SPC 13/19: Capital Disregards 14/19: Prescribed Disease: A15 Dupuytren's Contracture 17/19: Right to reside - EEA National who ceases self-employment because of the physical constraints of the late stages of pregnancy and the aftermath of childbirth - IS

  24. Added DMG memo 02/20: The application of article 5 of regulation (EC) no. 883/2004 of the European parliament and of the council.

  25. Added DMG Memo 01/20: Civil Partnerships for opposite sex couples

  26. Minor change. Revised DMG 17/19 - para 19 - added supplementary wording to clarify the date as being that of the date of the UT decision.

  27. Added 'DMG Memo 17/19: Right to reside – EEA National who ceases self-employment because of the physical constraints of the late stages of pregnancy and the aftermath of childbirth – IS'.

  28. Added DMG memo 16/19: Tolley lead cases guidance.

  29. Added DMG memo 15/19: JSA higher level sanctions amendments 2019.

  30. Added 'DMG memo 13/19: Capital Disregards' and 'DMG memo 14/19: Prescribed disease A15: Dupuytren's contracture'.

  31. Added DMG Memo 12/19: Funeral Support Payments.

  32. Removed memos 6/17 'ESA, removal of Work-Related Activity component', 20/17 'Infected blood and thalidomide regulations' and 10/18 'Changes to prescribed diseases B15 and D6' as they are no longer current.

  33. Added DMG memo 11/19: Right to Reside – IS, JSA, SPC, ESA and SPC.

  34. Added DMG memo 10/19 about the Children's Funeral Fund for England.

  35. Added memo 9/19 about changes for deductions for arrears of child maintenance. Updated memo 14/18 'State Pension Credit, child addition' to correct the amount in paragraph 28.

  36. Removed DMG memos '15/18: International issues', '24/17: The social security (Misc Amdt No.5) regs 2017' and '19/14: Jobseeker's Allowance and Income Support - Tax Credits, Changes from December 2014' as these have now been incorporated into the advice for decision makers and decision makers' guides.

  37. Added DMG memo 11/16: State Pension – consequential amendments.

  38. Removed DMG memo 01/19 and replaced with DMG 07/19 - Mixed age couples in State Pension Credit, also revised DMG memo 08/19 - AA, DLA (Care) & CA: effect of recent court of appeal decision regarding the Past Presence Test (PPT) and GSL.

  39. Added DMG Memo 5/19: late application for a mandatory reconsideration, and DMG memo 6/19: right to reside: EU settlement scheme (EUSS): IS, JSA, ESA and SPC. Removed DMG Memo 17/17: late application for a mandatory reconsideration - effect of a recent 3 judge panel. This memo is no longer relevant.

  40. Removed memos 15/17, 8/17, 5/17, 4/17, 3/17, 13/16, 11/16, 17/15 as these have been incorporated into the Decision Makers' Guide. Republished memo 2/16 'Right to reside – IS, JSA(IB), ESA(IR) & SPC – Effect of UT Decision'.

  41. Added DMG memo 3/19: Income Tax rates, IS/JSA/ESA/SPC benefit rates and social security contributions rates from April 2019 and revised chapters 23, 26, 27, 33, 44, 46, 49, 60, 78 and 79 annotated to memo 3/19. Also deleted out of date memos 7/17, 10/17, 11/17, 14/17, 21/17, 22/17, 12/18 and 2/19.

  42. Added DMG memo 1/19: Mixed age couples in State Pension Credit and DMG memo 2/19: Civil status certificates.

  43. Replaced DMG memo 17/18 as it was a duplicate of memo 16/18. And added DMG memo 18/18: Best Start Grants.

  44. Added DMG memo 17/18: The Social Security (misc amdt no. 5) Regs 2017.

  45. Added DMG memos 14/18: State Pension Credit - child addition, 15/18: International issues, JSA, ESA, IS and SPC and 16/18: The Social Security (misc amdt no. 5) Regs 2017.

  46. Published DMG memo 13/18: Change to the time for claiming a Sure Start Maternity Grant and DMG memo 12/18: Treatment of arrears and capital disregards in income-related benefits.

  47. Added DMG memo 10/18: Changes to prescribed diseases B15 and D6 and DMG memo 11/18: Incapacity Benefit reassessment - arrears of ESA(IR).

  48. Deleted out of date DMG memos: 32/10, 42/10, 35/12, 39/12, 23/14, 24/14, 33/14, 38/14, 13/15, 20/15, 26/15, 28/15, 29/15, 9/16, 12/16, 14/16, 19/16, 21/16, 22/16, 24/16, 25/16, 26/16, 9/17, 12/17, 19/17, 3/18, 4/18 and 5/18.

  49. Published DMG memo 9/18: Scottish Carer's Allowance supplement.

  50. Deleted out of date DMG memo 2/18.

  51. Deleted out of date DMG memos: 12/15, 18/16, 20/16, 7/18, 6/18 and 3/18.

  52. Added DMG memo 8/18: Undocumented Commonwealth citizens resident in the UK – JSA, ESA, IS and SPC.

  53. Added DMG memo 7/18: Reduced Earnings Allowance.

  54. Added DMG memos 3/18: Social Fund funeral expenses amendment regulations 2018, IS, JSA(IB), ESA(IR) and SPC, 4/18: Income tax rates, IS/JSA/ESA/ SPC benefit rates and social security contribution rates from April 2018, 5/18: Housing costs and Social Fund Maternity Grant and 6/18: DMG memo 6/18: JSA (legacy), Work and Health Programme (Mandatory Provision for the long-term unemployed).

  55. Added DMG memo 2/18: Incapacity Benefit reassessment, arrears of ESA(income-related).

  56. Added DMG memo 1/18: ESA, work-related activity and substantial risk.

  57. Added DMG memos: 22/17 - Kinship care and continuing care payments: IS, JSA and ESA, 23/17 - October 2017 miscellaneous amendments and 24/17 - The Social Security (misc amdt no. 5) Regs 2017.

  58. Added DMG memo 21/17: Qualifying young persons participating in relevant training schemes - ESA.

  59. Added DMG memos 19/17: ESA, response to the first-tier tribunal and 20/17: Infected blood and thalidomide regs.

  60. Added DMG memo 18/17: Amendments to the JSA hardship regulations.

  61. Added DMG memo 17/17: Late application for a mandatory reconsideration, effect of a recent 3 judge panel.

  62. Added DMG memo 16/17: AA, DLA (care), WFP and CA, effect of recent UT decision regarding the past presence test (PPT) and GSL.

  63. Added DMG memo 15/2017: Bereavement Support Payment (BSP) - reciprocal agreements.

  64. Added DMG memo 14/2017: JSA/IS/SPC/ESA – Payments from the London emergencies trust and the we love Manchester emergency fund.

  65. Published DMG memo 13/17: ESA - further evidence of Limited Capability for Work (LCW).

  66. Published DMG memos 9 to 12/17.

  67. Published DMG memos 6/17: ESA, removal of work-related activity component, 7/17: ESA, IB and SDA, exempt work and ESA, hardship and 8/17: Effect of imprisonment on Bereavement Support Payment.

  68. Deleted out of date DMG memos - 43/09, 7/14, 10/14, 27/14, 27/15, 4/16 and 15 to 17/16.

  69. Added DMG memo 5/17: Income Tax rates, IS/JSA/ESA/SPC benefit rates and social security contributions rates from April 2017.

  70. Added DMG memos 3/17: Pensions paid to victims of national socialist persecution and DMG 4/17: Changes to prescribed diseases.

  71. Added DMG memo 2/17: Carer's Allowance – meaning of 'temporary interruption' to full-time education.

  72. Deleted out of date DMG memos 37/11, 3/14 and 5/14.

  73. Published DMG memo 1/17: Amendment to the Northern Ireland reciprocal arrangements Regs in respect of bereavement support payment (BSP), ESA(cont) and JSA(IB)

  74. Published DMG memo 26/16: Industrial Injury Disablement Benefit, presumption and rebuttal and revised DMG memo 25/16 - added more detail to examples.

  75. Added DMG memo 25/16: Revision and supersession – Effects of changes to collection of class 2 National Insurance.

  76. Added DMG memos 22/16: Social Fund Cold Weather Payment, changes to scheme for winter 2016/17, IS, JSA(IB), ESA(IR) and SPC and 24/2016: Right to reside, immigration (EEA) Regulations 2016, IS, JSA(IB), ESA(IR) and SPC. DMG 23/16 is for internal use only and will not be published.

  77. Added DMG memo 21/16: Employment and Support Allowance, initiating and completing personal action.

  78. Re-published DMG memo 4/16: Limitation of savings credit for mixed age couples and phasing out of AIPS - still current.

  79. Added DMG memo 20/16: The past presence test and refugees.

  80. Added DMG memo 19/16: IS, ESA(IR) and JSA(IB) - postgraduate master's degree loans and special support loans.

  81. Added DMG memo 18/16: SPC temporary absence from Great Britain.

  82. Added DMG memo 17/16: Changes to JSA and ESA (legacy benefits) sanctions provisions July 2016.

  83. Deleted out of date memos: 14/13, 5, 10 and 23/15 and 1, 2, 4 to 8, 10 and 13/16.

  84. Added new DMG memos 14 to 16/16.

  85. Added DMG memo 13/16 - Changes to how claims can be made and change of circumstances can be reported, ESA and IIDB.

  86. Added DMG memo 12/16.

  87. Added DMG memo 11/16.

  88. Added DMG memos 7 to 10/16.

  89. Added DMG memos - 2/16: Right to reside – IS, JSA(IB), ESA(IR) and SPC – effect of Upper Tribunal decision, 4/16: Limitation of savings credit for mixed age couples and phasing out of AIPS, 5/16: Income Support – Right to reside – Worker status and pregnancy and 6/16: State Pension – Prisoners and overseas residents.

  90. Deleted out of date memos: 22, 25, 28, 31, 35 and 37/14, 4, 9, 16, 18, 19 and 21/15.

  91. Added DMG memo 1/16: DLA claimant over 65 returning from an EU member state within 12 months

  92. Added DMG memos 28/15: DLA mobility component, severely visually impaired people and 29/15: Advanced claims and awards of State Pension.

  93. Added DMG memos 26/15: Deciding the competent state to pay cash sickness benefit and 27/15: Action to take once competency has been decided.

  94. Added DMG memo 23/15: Additional pension, payment of class 3A contributions.

  95. Added memo 21/15: Changes to weather stations and postcode districts relating to Cold Weather Payments - IS, JSA(IB), ESA(IR) and SPC.

  96. Added DMG memo 20/15: Computation of earnings – earnings of employed earners.

  97. Deleted out of date memos - 13/14, 1/15, 2/15, 3/15, 6/15, 7/15, 8/15, 11/15 and 14/15.

  98. Added memo 19/15: Housing costs, standard interest rate changes affecting IS, JSA, ESA and SPC.

  99. Added DMG memo 18/15: Genuine Prospect of Work, extended period of sickness.

  100. Added memo 17/15: ESA - work related activity and substantial risk.

  101. Published new DMG memo 16/15: EEA right to reside, permanent residence.

  102. Published memos 13/15: Winter Fuel Payments and 14/15: DLA, severely mentally impaired – arrested development or Incomplete development of the brain.

  103. Deleted out of date memos: 37/12, 8/13, 20/13, 22/13, 28/13, 2/14, 4/14, 11/14, 12/14, 14/14, 15/14, 16/14, 17/14, 18/14, 20/14, 21/14, 26/14 29/14, 30/14, 32/14, 34/14 and 36/14.

  104. Published DMG memos 6 to 12/15.

  105. DMG memo 5/15: Rates for Income Tax, IS, JSA, ESA, SPC benefit rates and social security contributions from April 2015.

  106. Added DMG memo 4/2015: Substantial risk.

  107. Added memo 3/15: Changes to Presumption and Prescribed Diseases.

  108. Added memos 1/15: Misc amendments and 2/15: Extending GPOW assessments to stock EEA nationals.

  109. Added memo 38/14: JSA 18 to 21 Workskills Pilot Scheme.

  110. Added revised memo 3/14 annotated to memo 36/14.

  111. Added memos 35/14: ESA, continence activities, 36/14: Marriage of same sex couples - further changes and substituting pre-1975 contributions and 37/14: ESA, activity 1 and use of manual wheelchair.

  112. Added memos 33/14: November 2014 misc amendments and 34/14: Maternity Allowance curtailment.

  113. Added memos 31 and 32/14 and revised memos 21 and 25/14 - annotated with new memos.

  114. Added DMG memos 28, 29 and 30/14.

  115. Added memos 26/14 - SF CWP - changes to weather stations and postcode districts for winter 2014/15 - IS, JSA(IB), ESA(IR) and SPC and 27/14 and 27/14 - Second or subsequent referrals for the WCA - ESA.

  116. Added memo 25/14: Right to reside - CJEU judgment Saint Prix v SSWP.

  117. Added memos 23 and 24/2014.

  118. Added memo 22/14: ESA: Activity 5(d).

  119. Replaced memo 21/14 with revised version. Sentence added and a date changed in paragraph 1.

  120. Added DMG memo 21/14: IS, ESA(IR) and SPC - right to reside - establishing whether an EEA national is/was a 'worker' or a 'self-employed person'.

  121. Published DMG memo 20/14: Special educational needs – IS, JSA and ESA.

  122. Published DMG memo 19/14 about Jobseeker's Allowance and Income Support and Tax Credits changes from December 2014.

  123. Added memo 18/14: Change to pensionable age.

  124. Added memos 16/14: Jobseeker’s Allowance, homeless claimants and availability for employment and 17/14: Deductions in Respect of CSM – fees, IS, JSA, ESA and SPC.

  125. Published DMG memo 15/14: Habitual residence and right to reside - JSA.

  126. Added memos 13/14 - Carer's Allowance - increase in the earnings limit and 14/14 - Right to reside – minor amendment in the way that an EEA national’s right of residence is defined – IS, JSA(IB), ESA(IR) and SPC.

  127. Added DMG memo 12/14 - ESA - Appeals against time limit decisions.

  128. Added memo 10/14: ESA - recording Limited capability for work scores.

  129. Added memo 11/14 - Work-related activity and work-focused interviews for lone parents.

  130. Added memo 9/14: Miscellaneous amendments April 2014.

  131. Added DMG memo 8/14: Maternity Allowance - Participating wife or civil partner of self-employed earner.

  132. Deleted out of date memos - 28/12, 36/12, 1/13, 5/13, 12/13, 15/13, 16/13, 17/13, 18/13, 19/13, 23/13, 24/13, 25/13, 26/13 and 27/13.

  133. Added memo 7/14 - ESA - sensory impairment activities.

  134. Added memos: 4/14: Income Tax rates IS, JSA, ESA, SPC benefit rates, social security contribution rates and increases of employment rights limits from April 2014, 5/14: Rates for Income Tax, UC benefit rates, social security contributions and increases of employment rights limits from April 2014 and 6/14: Housing costs – adapting a dwelling.

  135. Added DMG memo 3/14: Marriage of same sex couples.

  136. Added DMG memo 2/14: ESA - good cause.

  137. Added DMG memo 1/14: JSA(IB) – right to reside – establishing whether an EEA national is/was a 'worker' or a 'self-employed person'.

  138. Added DMG memo 28/13: JSA(IB) – 3 months residence requirement.

  139. Added DMG memo 27/13 – Nationals – ending of restriction on right to reside.

  140. Added latest DMG memo 26/13.

  141. Added memo 25.

  142. Published: DMG memo 23/13: JSA domestic violence amendments and DMG memo 24/13: JSA and schemes for assisting persons to obtain employment – new schemes from 5 November 2013

  143. Added DMG memos 19/13 to 21/13.

  144. First published.