§ Mr. Tony Banks
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security by what date he expects family credit claims to be dealt with within the statutory time limit of 14 consecutive days.
§ Mr. Peter Lloyd
I assume that the time limit to which the hon. Member refers is that contained in section 99(1) of the Social Security Act 1975. This provides that99—(1) An adjudication officer to whom a claim or question is submitted under section 98 shall take it into consideration and, so far as practicable, dispose of it in accordance with this section, and with procedure regulations under section 115, within 14 days of its submission to him.
A claim for family credit is not normally submitted to an adjudication officer until all the evidence about the claim has been gathered. Claims are then determined by the adjudication officer, on average, within five days.