HC Deb 20 December 1999 vol 341 c332W
Mr. Webb

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will estimate the(a) cost in the next five years and (b) eventual cost of re-introducing a lone parent premium within the means-tested benefits system for those lone parents with a child aged under five years, to apply immediately to all existing recipients. [103141]

Angela Eagle

The information is not available in the format requested. Such information as is available is in the table.

The estimated cost based on April 2000 rates up until 2001–02 and the estimated long run cost
£ million
Year Cost per annum
2000–01 10
2001–02 20
Long-run 50


1. Costs have been rounded to the nearest £10 million.

2. Assumes a long parent premium in year 1—April 2000—of £1.65 (this is the difference between the April 2000 rate of Family Premium for Lone Parents (£15.90) and the standard rate of family premium (£14.25).

3. Lone parent premium is assumed to be subsequently uprated by the ROSSI index.

4. The long-run cost has been expressed in current prices. Because we do not have forecasts of the long-run IS lone parent caseload we have based it on the IS lone parent caseload as in 2000–01.

5. Assumes that the lone parent premium will only be paid to lone parents who have a child aged under five years old.

6. Caseloads are consistent with forecasts underlying the 1999 pre-budget report.

7. Estimates of the Income Support (IS) and Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) costs have been calculated from the August 1999 5 per cent. scans of the IS and JSA computer systems.

8. Estimates of the Housing Benefit (HB) and Council Tax Benefit (CTB) costs have been calculated from the May 1998 1 per cent. sample of all live HB and CTB claims.

9. Forecasts of the IS lone parent caseload are not available beyond 2001–02.