This website was established while I was a Member of Parliament. The site content is being kept online as a source of information, but all forms / email have been disabled.

21 July 2009

16bn in tax credit waste since 2003

John Barrett, Liberal Democrat MP for Edinburgh West, today called for a radical simplification of the Tax Credits System after revealing that £16bn has been lost through overpayments, fraud and error since their introduction in 2003.

New research by the Liberal Democrats has revealed that:

  • In the five years since tax credits were introduced £16bn has been lost in overpayments, fraud and error.
  • Almost £1 in every £10 of tax credits paid was subject to fraud and error in 2007-08.
  • 410,000 families missed out on an average of £536 in 2007-08.

Commenting, John Barrett said:

“The tax credits system in this country is so complex that it is easily abused by fraudsters, often misunderstood by claimants and regularly mismanaged by officials.

“Almost every week at my surgeries I meet people who have had their fingers burnt by the tax credit system. Families are forced to ride a financial rollercoaster when they have to pay for mistakes made by officials who can’t understand the system themselves.

“The Government may claim that they are getting to grips with the problem but the reality is that almost £1 in every £10 of tax credits paid is lost through either fraud or error, this is just not good enough.

“Ministers have been promising a simpler tax credit system for years. Unless we see a return to a simpler system of fixed awards then the amounts lost through overpayments, fraud and error will only continue to rise.

 

Notes

Tax Credits Fraud and Error figures released today.

 

Money

Money

Related items

Keywords:
tax and benefits
tax credit

Click on a keyword to find other pages with the same keyword.

This website was established while I was a Member of Parliament. The site content is being kept online as a source of information, but all forms / email have been disabled.