HC Deb 12 January 1971 vol 809 cc40-1W
Mrs. Kellett

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services in view of the hardship that will befall many women now that the Divorce Reform Act, 1969 has come into effect on 1st January, 1971, what arrangements are being made through the supplementary benefits scheme to protect deserted or divorced wives whose husbands fail to provide regular or adequate maintenance payments.

Mr. Dean

Arrangements already exist for dealing with the situation envisaged whenever a woman is entitled to supplementary benefit under the normal rules. In particular, women beneficiaries who have court orders for maintenance payable through Magistrates' Courts in England and Wales can authorise Clerks to the Justices to remit to the Department any moneys received under the orders so that their full entitlement to supplementary benefit can be paid regularly. In Scotland in suitable cases it is possible for the woman to arrange for the Department to collect direct from the liable relative or from her solicitor when payments are remitted to him.