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Tougher tests planned for migrant to access benefits

Tougher tests for EU migrants looking to access benefits will be introduced from March 1, Iain Duncan Smith has announced. The Government wants migrants to prove they have earned £150 per week for three months before getting "worker" status.

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EU migrants face tougher tests under Govt plans

European migrants will face tougher tests before they can access a range of benefits in the UK from the beginning of March, Iain Duncan Smith has announced.

The work and pensions secretary believes it is too easy for migrants who have not worked a lot to claim benefits. Credit: PA

Migrants from the EU will have to prove they have earned around £150 a week for three months before they can qualify for "worker" status, the work and pensions secretary has said.

If they can prove they have worked in the UK, then EU migrants will have access to some child benefit, child tax credit and jobseeker's allowance if they lose their employment, as well as housing benefit.

Anyone with earnings below that threshold will face a fuller assessment of whether their work was "genuine and effective", with the possibility of being denied worker status.

The earnings threshold will be set at the level at which people start paying national insurance, £149 a week in 2013/14, and £153 a week in 2014/15.

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