Opposition questions Treasury on Child Benefit reforms

Opposition questions Treasury on Child Benefit reforms

Opposition questions Treasury on Child Benefit reforms

During Treasury question time, challenges to the upcoming child benefit reforms were put forward by Opposition Members who questioned the mechanism used to enforce the changes, and the fairness of means-testing.

Speaking to The Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury Mr David Gauke, Labour MP Nic Dakin asked what mechanism would be used to ensure that households which include one or more higher rate taxpayer would be excluded from receiving child benefit payments. Mr Gauke asserted that benefit would be withdrawn using PAYE and self-assessment systems, claiming the “vast majority of claimants” would continue to receive payments and would “not be affected by this change”.

Mr Dakin then criticised the Prime Minister’s claim earlier this year that he wanted this Government to be “the most family-friendly Government we have ever had in this country”. Mr Dakin asked, “How does this proposal support a family where on partner stays at home to look after the children while the other partner earns over £45,000 a year?”

Mr Gauke responded by attacking the Opposition’s assertion that households paying higher rate tax should continue to receive benefit payments while “those who do not earn so much contribute towards that”, saying it showed Labour was “not getting to grips with the scale of the [fiscal] crisis”.

The plans, set to come into force from January 2013, have previously been attacked for being unworkable unless an overhaul of the tax system takes place. As child benefit is paid to the mother with the father’s tax status irrelevant, there were fears of difficulty determining if a household had one or more higher rate taxpayer.

Comments & Debate

  1. November 25, 2010 at 3:05 pm Emese Pomezanski Commented:

    I am a single mother with two children, who has just recently moved together with a new partner. My working and Child tax credit payments have ceased immediately, as my partner earns just above £43.000. This means that i am now £145 worse off / week. Our living costs have not decreased in comparisation with this, in fact our mortgage is higher, we had to have a water meter fitted, compulsory!, apparently to everybody who moves house, which means our water bill is much higher. My partner also has two children and pays child maintanance to his ex-wife. That payment has reduced due to the fact that now we are living together, but nowhere near with the amount which i am now loosing out on tax credits.
    My two children should not be his responsibility to support. But as i do not receive tax credits anymore it is very difficult for me to do that simply on my earnings. I also do not receive any child maintanance payments from my children’s father.
    If Child Benefit will be stopped there will be no support whatsoever for my children. A family like this is going to be much worse off, where there is 1 higher tax payer, but whom also is paying out child maintanance, how come his earnings should support my two children, his two and mine are not even his own??????????????????

  2. December 6, 2010 at 8:41 am Danny Cameron Commented:

    How is Emese Pomezanski a single mother if she has a parner?

  3. November 17, 2011 at 6:18 pm David Smith Commented:

    Ok , has been a single mother than, that’s not the point here though, the point is that the new child benefit regulations will not support families in similar situation and in fact will discourage people to move together.

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