16:50 13 December 2013
The government is set to announce new rules that will apply to all overseas nationals and to Britons returning to the country after living abroad. In order to claim benefits, migrants are required to pass a series of tough new tests, which include a check on their fluency in English. The new rule will is expected to send a strong message to potential “benefit tourists.”
For the first time, claimants will be required to demonstrate their proficiency in English and must provide proofs that they are really looking for work before they came to this country.
Iain Duncan Smith, the Work and Pensions Secretary, said: “It is vitally important we have strict rules in place to protect the integrity of our benefits system.
“The British public are rightly concerned that migrants should contribute to this country and not be drawn here by the attractiveness of our benefits system and we are taking action to ensure that is the case.”
New research shows that there are about 400,000 overseas nationals that were claiming working age benefits in February.
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