Review the system by which tax credits are calculated and paid to people on low income, to avoid unreasonably long telephone waiting times, retrospective claims that mean that families go into debt, and develop a more efficient system for appealing against demands for benefits to be paid back.
Currently debt management services are called in to manage repayment without people being able to challenge mistakes. The system is not transparent as claimants are not informed as to how their benefits are worked out so that mistakes can be rectified early and the complaints system takes months to respond, during which time repayments have to be made.
Why is this important?
People are not claiming benefits that they are entitled to for fear of finding themselves in debt, or because it can take so long to get through on the telephone. Also because once it has been deemed that tax credits have been overpaid people are powerless to appeal against the decision