Integrated child credit plans challenged by MPs

Plans for integrated child credit have been challenged by a
House of Commons committee. While welcoming the ICC, the social
security committee questioned the timetable, payment level and the
“considerable investment in new technology to make the promise of
ICC a reality”.

Planned for 2003, ICC will incorporate the different strands of
income-related support for children, found in income support,
jobseeker’s allowance, working families’ and disabled
person’s tax credits and the forthcoming children’s tax

“ICC provides an opportunity for a long overdue review of the
level and structure of financial support for children in Britain
which should not be missed,” said the report.

But ICC was integrally linked to the restructuring of the
Benefits Agency and the creation of the Working Age Agency (WAA)
later this year, not to mention “an immense programme of
replacement of outdated IT systems in the Department of Social

Expressing concerns over the timetable and the need for full
consultation, the committee warned the ICC should only be
introduced once computer systems at the Inland Revenue, the Child
Benefit Centre and the WAA were fully compatible and

The committee also said that child benefit and ICC should be
paid by the same government departments, but was worried that plans
were “so uncertain and ill-defined at this stage”.

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