To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of families affected by her Department's decision to write off child maintenance arrears of (a) £65.01 and £500, and (b) more than £500, and if she will make a statement.
10 April 2019
In the “Child Maintenance: A New Compliance and Arrears Strategy” document which was published in December 2017, estimates were made regarding the number of parents who would be affected. There were estimated to be approximately 360,000 cases where parents would not be offered the opportunity to make representation (below £500 and less than 10 years old or below £1000 and over 10 years old) and approximately 475,000 cases where they would (over £500 and less than 10 years old or over £1000 and over 10 years old). This can be found here https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/child-maintenance-a-new-compliance-and-arrears-strategy.
Information for how many parents have currently had their arrears written off is not readily available and has not previously been published as official statistics, however we expect these new statistics to be published in June 2019. Information on the planned changes to the Child Support Agency Quarterly Statistical Summary to incorporate this information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/child-support-agency-statistics-publication-strategy.