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Winter Fuel Payments: Maladministration

Volume 487: debated on Monday 9 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (a) how many and (b) what proportion of cold weather payments have been paid in error in each year since the introduction of cold weather payments, broken down by reasons for error; and at what cost to the public purse the payments were made. (249448)

Cold weather payments commenced in November 1988 but records are available only from the year 1999-2000 onwards.

While we do not hold the exact information requested in the PQ, the Department is able to provide summarised information that was reported in the Department for Work and Pensions Accounts from 1999-2000 to 2007-08 inclusive. During this period, cold weather payments totalling £87.382 million were paid out with £2,155.00 reported as being overpaid and the amount written off falling just below £1,000.00

The value of error in each year since 1999-2000

£

Value of new cold weather payment overpayments

Value of new cold weather payment overpayment write-offs in year

1999-2000

450.00

0.00

2000-01

258.50

8.50

2001-02

322.00

221.00

2002-03

1,067.50

416.50

2003-04

0

263.50

2004-05

34.00

17.00

2005-06

17.00

25.50

2006-07

17.00

17.00

2007-08

117.00

0.00

Total

2,155.00

969.00

Note:

Amounts may not be written off in the year in which the error occurs.