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To not be surprised a lot of MP's don't know how tax credits work?

(18 Posts)
ssd Wed 21-Oct-15 08:09:39

I heard this last night on the news, think it was the 7pm ch4 news, I can't say I'm surprised...it's a very complicated system and unless you actually receive tax credits and have seen how the system works, it's easy to think it's money paid to top part time wages up to the same amount you would receive as someone who works full time.

Just to clarify top ups don't ever equate to the same as working full time, nor should they.

It's so very very annoying that MP's who vote on this don't really understand the ins and outs of it all. It's one thing reading posts on here that don't have any basis on facts, but at least posters who don't understand tc aren't voting on them.

AIBU?

OneFlewOverTheDodosNest Wed 21-Oct-15 08:54:22

YANBU - unfortunately there is no basic requirements of understanding before MPs can vote on life changing matters, so they believe a load of propaganda and then wonder why things don't work...

ssd Wed 21-Oct-15 08:56:34

It's really quite scary when you are at the receiving end of these changes and your life will be seriously changed by someone voting for something they haven't much clue about..

ConferencePear Wed 21-Oct-15 09:01:15

Governments frequently pass laws without any proper understanding of the full implications of them. Full marks to Heidi Allen for her brave maiden speech yesterday.

But does anyone know how tax credits actually work. - don't 'they' use some secret algorithm so no one can ever work out how much money they should get, which is why the over/underpayment thing is such an issue? or was that just my experience whh is why I stopped claiming them when our income got borderline
Seriously though, MPs should have to take a test, or watch Malcolm Tucker's Zeitgeist tape.

angemorange Wed 21-Oct-15 09:53:00

It's profoundly depressing, although having spoken to people who work in tax credits over the years I'm not sure they understand how they work either!

Given that MPs all earn in excess of £60k and therefore fall outside tax credits I'm not surprised they know so little about them.

ssd Sun 25-Oct-15 22:54:13

Well, I hope the lords know how they work and vote against them tomorrow

HirplesWithHaggis Sun 25-Oct-15 23:25:37

Heidi Allen made a lovely speech. Then voted for the cuts.

ssd Mon 26-Oct-15 07:44:53

did she vote for them, I didnt realise that!

yeOldeTrout Mon 26-Oct-15 07:57:44

what amazes me is no one remembers what affect TC had when introduced. It was transformative. Tax Credits literally made work profitable for hundreds of thousands of people. The opportunity to work gave folk dignity, hence why so enormously popular.

I think in 2002 the Tory Party was still smarting so badly from their entrenched & fierce but ultimately pointless opposition to a UK minimum wage (introduced April 1999) that they couldn't possibly propose that as alternative to the tax credits (came in 2003). Now the Tories embrace Minimum Wage confused as an anecdote to Tax Credits. From what I can follow, the Tories are now endorsing minimum wage for precisely the same reasons they opposed it in 1998 confused. Relying on minimum wage with no tax credits (benefits as they are now or another form of subsidy) shows such poor understanding of how the low wage economy works. URK....!!

ssd Mon 26-Oct-15 08:07:26

yes, we will lose £50 per week and the min wage increase I will receive will be £10.

yeOldeTrout Mon 26-Oct-15 08:33:41

Tories in 1998, introduction of a minimum wage will mean
unacceptable "burden" on businesses and "job losses". Besides, the minimum wage is meaningless in USA because "nobody is actually paid it" (said some plonker on Radio 4, I was paid 5 cents above MW).

Tories in 00's: minimum wage has turned out better than expected & been tolerable to business because it's kept low, keep it low, don't let it apply to young people either.

Tories in 2009, minimum wage should be abolished because it is preventing people from getting jobs.

Tories in 2015,
Why should we subsidise businesses to pay low wages?

How about because... Who do we think benefits most from low wages? Is it comfortable people like me on a good wage who could pay twice as much with a shrug, the rich corporate fat cats who don't even have a clue what a pint of milk costs, or is it the poor, because costs for everything else and inflation tend to stay down if minimum wage is fairly minimal. If minimum wage is raised sharply then we need price controls for basic goods (housing, bread, butter, etc), or the poorest will suffer or leap back into more dependency on other benefits. Or Tax credits.

ARGHGHGHG...

ssd Mon 26-Oct-15 10:06:57

AARRGGHH!! indeed!!

wanderings Tue 27-Oct-15 06:37:40

This is one of the very things wrong with politics. Those who have the power don't have the same worries as everyone else, because they earn so much.

Mistigri Tue 27-Oct-15 07:17:47

Using rises in the minimum wage as a simple alternative to tax credits makes no sense anyway. As Lady Hollis pointed out yesterday, tax credits also make work pay for those supporting dependants. If you take her example of two call-centre workers - a person without dependants working f/t on £13k and a single parent with two children working p/t on the same hourly rate but earning £9k - then it's clear that it's unreasonable to expect an employer to "make work worthwhile" in the latter case.

As the OP points out, people including MPs haven't really thought about this. I was shocked by the newspaper reactions at the time the policy was brought in, they were totally fooled too. Headline politics at its worst, and what really fucking annoys me is that it's taken a second chamber full of old rich people and some right-leaning think tanks to actually make the implications clear. Harriet Harman and the labour old guard should hang their heads in shame.

Shazziedazzie Tue 27-Oct-15 07:23:29

I do think they need to tighten them. The woman on qt runs a nail bar in her lounge for 16 hours a week. That doesn't really sound like working hard to me, sounds like a fiddle. Also I hear of a loop that lots of big issue sellers use to get HB and WTC as they are all self employed.

TiredButFineODFOJ Tue 27-Oct-15 09:26:15

I worked for the Inland Revenue (back in the day) on Tax Credits data processing. We had a week of training on how tax credits worked. And I quote the trainer "no-one really fully understands it".

ssd Thu 29-Oct-15 16:35:17

a few weeks ago I phoned the tax credits hotline to ask them if they could give me a revised figure of what I'd get when the cuts came in, the guy was a real arse and said "you seem to know more about it than me" and told me he hadnt heard of any cuts....this was well before the HOL stuff...

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