§ Mr. Boswell
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what action he is taking(a) to improve access to the Disabled Person's Tax Credit and (b) to speed up consideration of cases. 
§ Dawn Primarolo
[holding answer 11 January 2001]: When the Disabled Person's Tax Credit (DPTC) was introduced in October 1999 the qualifying benefit rules were amended to give people moving off various out-of-work incapacity benefits more time in which to find a job and apply for DPTC. From October 2000, a new route to DPTC, called the DPTC Fast-Track, was introduced to help people who became sick and disabled while in work, to stay in work. In August 2000, over 126W 25,000 disabled workers were benefiting from DPTC—37 per cent. more than were receiving Disability Working Allowance in July 1999. The Inland Revenue are continually monitoring progress against the turnaround targets for DPTC claims (set out in the IR's Annual Plan 2000–01) and these targets are reviewed annually as part of the Department's Public Service and Service Delivery Agreements with Treasury Ministers.