CSA collects less cash than old unit
Friday 19 May 1995
The Child Support Agency is collecting far less money from absent fathers than the system it replaced, according to a study by the Network Against the Child Support Act. The CSA did not deny the findings yesterday.
Before the CSA was set up in April 1993, money was recouped from absent fathers whose former partners claimed benefits.
The Department of Social Security's liable relatives unit collected pounds 313m in its last year, with a staff of 1,600. The CSA last year only collected pounds 44m with a staff of 6,500. A further pounds 108.61m was collected via maintenance agreements inherited from the old unit.
This shows that each CSA officer has only collected pounds 6,797 in new money, while under the old system each officer collected pounds 195,625. Operating costs under the CSA are estimated at pounds 8.31 per case; under the old scheme each case cost pounds 3.42.
However, the report does show a further pounds 20.43m was saved from the social security budget as a result of the money collected from fathers lifting mothers off benefit altogether.
By far the biggest success the CSA has had has been in exposing benefit fraud. Following CSA inquiries so many parents with care abruptly stopped claiming benefit that pounds 165.95m has been saved. This is thought to be due to fraud where couples said they had separated, each claimed more benefit separately, but were in fact still living together. In other cases mothers on benefit may also have been receiving undeclared funds from absent fathers.
The CSA says it has cleared over 800,000 cases. However, only 299,000 full assessments have been made, while 403,000 have been "cleared without assessment". These are cases where sabotage by one parent, usually the absent father, has prevented it gaining enough information and it has abandoned the attempt at collection.
The other 129,000 are interim assessments where the CSA, having failed to get a response, makes a high estimated charge to scare parents into responding. Few of these have been paid.
- 1 Jeremy Clarkson 'sees no problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC
- 2 'Alien thigh bone' on Mars: Excitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
- 3 Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
- 4 London restaurant 34 creates champagne glass modelled on Kate Moss’ left breast
- 5 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
'Alien thigh bone' on Mars: Excitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
Russell Brand opposes anti-Semitism after death threats: 'We must disavow all forms of prejudice that lead to exclusion and execution'
James Foley 'beheaded': Isis video shows militant with British accent 'execute US journalist' – as hunt begins for killer
ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
Microbial life found living on the exterior of the International Space Station, say reports
Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
Scottish independence: English people overwhelmingly want Scotland to stay in the UK
Isis threat: Cameron wants an alliance with Iran
Michael Brown shooting: Chaos erupts on the streets of Ferguson after autopsy shows teenager was shot six times – twice in the head
Disgusting, frustrating, but intriguing: how the country really feels about its politicians
Bin bag full of cats' heads discovered near Manchester's Curry Mile
£45000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits: Harrington Starr: SQL Developer (TSQL, S...
£45000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Front-End UI/U...
£30000 - £40000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: C#.NET ...