§ Dame Elaine Kellett-Bowman
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how much additional expenditure would be involved if the £15 earnings currently disregarded for benefit purposes were to be increased to £50 per week.
§ Miss Widdecombe
[holding answer 19 February 1991]: An increase of £35 in the earnings disregard would have effects on people's choices which are difficult to anticipate. However, we estimate that the cost might be in the region of £150 million across the income-related benefits.