David Crausby – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Department for Work and Pensions

The below Parliamentary question was asked by David Crausby on 2016-01-21.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what monitoring his Department is undertaking to ensure that the level of service to the public is not negatively affected by the transfer of responsibilities from the Child Support Agency to the Child Maintenance Service.

Priti Patel

The government has introduced a new statutory Child Maintenance Service for parents who are unable to make a family-based arrangement. It will bring speedier processing of applications, simpler calculations and faster enforcement action for those that choose not to pay. This will help increase the number of payments reaching children on time and in full and will result in a better use of taxpayers’ money.

We are contacting parents 6 months before their CSA case closes to allow them the opportunity to access the support services available to them. They receive a reminder 1 month before their CSA case ends, and a confirmation once it has actually ended. We do not transfer cases automatically to the Child Maintenance Service. We close them in a way that minimises the risk of disruption to child maintenance payments.

Cases on the previous CSA schemes are being closed in an order determined by case characteristics. This includes the micro-management of the phases of case closure using our tried and tested pathfinder approach; sequencing and prioritising case closure to minimise disruption for clients.

The Department set out an evaluation strategy in December 2014 which can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/387584/child-maintenance-reforms-evaluation-strategy.pdf