Tuesday, 28 May 2019

Questions (456)

Bernard Durkan


456. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the correct payment in respect of a working family payment in the case of a person (details supplied); the extent to which entitlement is likely to be affected by the recovery of a debt weekly payment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [22436/19]

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Written answers (Question to Employment)

Working Family Payment (WFP) is a weekly in-work payment which provides additional income support to employees on low earnings with children.

The person concerned has an outstanding debt with the Department and this debt is being recovered through an agreed direct debit recovery plan which amounts to repayments of €30.00 per week.

It is the Department's policy is to pursue all overpayments & debts and to ensure the recovery of outstanding debt in the shortest possible time frame. When scheme arrears are due to a customer, all or part of the arrears may be withheld to repay a debt.

The Department wrote to the person concerned on 15 May 2019 to inform them of the proposal to withhold all WFP arrears which are currently due. The person concerned may submit any comments relating to this proposal within 21 days for consideration by the debt recovery officer before any decision is made.

The person concerned is currently in receipt of WFP at the weekly rate of €121.00 and no deductions from this rate will take place until 21 days. Weekly deductions from a customer's Social Welfare rate are determined by factors such as debt balance, a person's circumstances, means and capacity to repay etc.

I trust this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.