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Family Credit

Volume 122: debated on Tuesday 10 November 1987

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To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) how much it would cost to use the family credit

The estimated median interval in weeks between the date an in-patient was placed on the waiting list and the date of admission for patients discharged in England since 1979 is given in the table. Reliable figures could not be produced for specialties having small numbers of patients. Comparable information for Wales is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Wales.system to ensure that no family man returning to work pays a marginal rate of tax and benefit withdrawal in excess of 50 per cent.;(2) what would be the cost in a full year if family credit were improved so that no family man taking up a job were to incur a tax and benefit withdrawal rate of more than 40 per cent.

To achieve these withdrawal rates it would be necessary to reduce the family credit taper to the point where a combination of tax, national insurance contributions and withdrawal of benefit produced the specific overall marginal tax rates. Overall, MTRs of either 40 or 50 per cent. would imply family credit taper rates which were so low that the coverage of family credit would be extended to include families with incomes subject to the higher income tax rates and therefore to withdrawal rates of more than the 40 or 50 per cent. from tax alone. It would also be necessary to increase the rates of credit to a point where, at the lowest levels of income, no recipient of family credit was also eligible for housing benefit. These increases would extend the coverage of family credit to even more families on higher incomes and already subject to higher rates of tax.