§ Mrs. Renée Short
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what percentage of those receiving family income supplement currently pay income tax; and what are the percentages for each year since 1970.
§ Mr. Peter Rees
[pursuant to his reply, 6 April 1981, c. 185]: Information is not collected in the form requested, but the following table gives, for the dates shown, the estimated percentage of family income supplement recipients who were above the tax threshold when benefit was claimed in the preceding 12 months:
Percentage April 1974 20 April 1975 22 April 1976 46 April 1977 56 April 1978 62 October 1979 72 April 1980 75
No more recent information is available. Although the FIS scheme began in August 1971, information prior to April 1974 does not enable an accurate estimate to be made of the numbers above the tax threshold for the early years of the scheme.
Estimates are given for April each year except for 1979, when the information was incomplete for that month and a percentage based on October is given instead.
In calculating the tax threshold, assumptions had to be made about the ages of the children. In families of up to four children they were all assumed to be under 11. For families with five to eight children it was assumed that four were under 11 and the rest 11 to 16. In families of nine children or more, four were assumed to be under 11, four 11 to 16 and the remainder over 16.