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House of Commons Hansard
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Children: Maintenance
29 March 2010
Volume 508
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To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what recent progress has been made on the transfer of pre-2003 Child Support Agency cases to the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission. [323484]

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The Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission is responsible for the child maintenance system. I have asked the Child Maintenance Commissioner to write to the hon. Member with the information requested and I have seen the response.

Letter from Stephen Geraghty:

In reply to your recent Parliamentary Question about the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission, the Secretary of State promised a substantive reply from the Child Maintenance Commissioner.

You asked the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what recent progress has been made on the transfer of pre-2003 Child Support Agency cases to the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission. (323484)

The problems encountered by the Child Support Agency following the launch of the Reforms in 2003 resulted in a decision to defer the bulk transfer of cases from the old (launched in 1993) scheme, to the current (launched in 2003) child support scheme in the meantime, cases were only migrated from the old computer system to the new computer system where they had a link with a case on the new system that made this necessary.

This decision was kept under review and in February 2006 the Government asked Sir David Henshaw to review the entire system of child maintenance. His subsequent report led to the Government’s White paper and to the Child Maintenance and Other Payments Act 2008, which makes provision for a new system of child maintenance the “future scheme”.

The future scheme will be introduced from 2011, and all clients on the two existing schemes will then have the opportunity to apply to that scheme or make a private arrangement. It is currently planned that this process will take around three years, after which both of the existing schemes will close. It is not Government policy to undertake a bulk transfer of cases between the two existing schemes in the meantime.

I hope you find this answer helpful.

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To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much the Child Support Agency was owed by non-resident parents on the latest date for which figures are available. [324756]

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The Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission is responsible for the child maintenance system. I have asked the Child Maintenance Commissioner to write to the hon. Member with the information requested and I have seen the response.

Letter from Stephen Geraghty:

In reply to your recent Parliamentary Question about the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission, the Secretary of State promised a substantive reply from the Child Maintenance Commissioner.

You asked the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much the Child Support Agency was owed by non-resident parents on the latest date for which figures are available.

Information on the amount of child maintenance arrears owed by non-resident parents is routinely published in the Child Support Agency Quarterly Summary of Statistics. This is available through the following link:

http://www.childmaintenance.org/en/publications/stats1209.html

As at December 2009, the amount of child maintenance arrears owed by Non-Resident Parents to either Parents with Care or the Secretary of State is £3,783 million. This has decreased from £3,842 million in December 2008. A total of £150m has been collected in arrears in the year January to December 2009. These figure are un-audited.

I hope you find this answer helpful.