§ Mr. Alan Howarth
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what estimate he has made of the annual cost of increasing the maintenance disregard for lone parents receiving family credit to(a) £20 per week, (b) £25 per week and (c) £30 per week and of the numbers who would gain in each case. 
§ Mr. Roger Evans
The information is set out in the table.
Estimated cost of increasing the maintenance disregard in family credit for lone parents 1997–98 Weekly maintenance disregard (£) Additional net benefit costs (£ Million) Number of gainers 20 5 50,000 25 10 50,000 30 15 50,000
Estimates are rounded to the nearest £5 million.