HC Deb 06 February 1945 vol 407 c1889
50. Mr. Oliver

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will consider extending the provisions of Section 25 of the Finance Act, 1944, which provides for the deduction by the taxpayer of sums paid to a wife under an order of the court for her maintenance, to cover cases of husbands living apart from their wives and who are making payments of maintenance under a Deed of Separation or other binding agreements; and whether he is aware that the present system of deducting tax from the gross amount paid causes a great deal of friction and confusion between the parties.

Sir J. Anderson

I do not think that it is either necessary or desirable to extend the provisions of Section 25 of the Finance Act, 1944, as suggested by my hon. Friend. Where maintenance payments are made under a deed of separation or other binding agreement, it is to be assumed that the Income Tax factor will have been taken into account in the negotiations between the parties as to the conditions of separation.

Mr. Oliver

Does not my right hon. Friend appreciate that much friction and hardship are caused by the deductions which are made before payment to the wife is made? Sometimes, as a result, a wife who should be paid £2 a week receives only £1, and an adjustment is subsequently made, and a great deal of friction and hardship is caused.

Viscountess Astor

Sometimes they pay it to someone who is not a wife.

Sir J. Anderson

If I may answer the question, I do not see why greater difficulty should arise in this class of case, than in other cases in which Income Tax is collected by deduction.