Oral Answers to Questions — Health and Unemployment Insurance Contributions (Prosecution).

– in the House of Commons on 21st May 1935.

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Photo of Mr William Thorne Mr William Thorne , West Ham Plaistow


asked the Minister of Health whether he has received a report from one of his national health insurance inspectors in connection with the case of George Pennington, who was formerly in business at Penrhyn Bay as a builder and contractor, who was fined 00A3;30 and costs at Llandudno on the 13th instant for failing to pay health insurance and unemployment insurance in respect of 15 of his workmen; if he is aware that out of £48 collected £23 of this money was taken from the workmen; and whether the workpeople involved will lose any benefit rights?

Photo of Mr Geoffrey Shakespeare Mr Geoffrey Shakespeare , Norwich

The facts are substantially as stated in the question, except that the sum of 00A3;48 is the approximate total of the insurance contributions which the employer should have paid. My right hon. Friend is informed that the Court has ordered that the contributions due shall be paid by the 13th June. If the employer complies with this order, the benefit position under National Health Insurance of any employe concerned will be revised as from the date of payment. If in the meantime any loss of benefit has resulted from the non-payment of the contributions the employe has a statutory right of recovering the loss from the employer.

Photo of Mr William Thorne Mr William Thorne , West Ham Plaistow

Can the Minister assure the House that, if all the cards have been properly made up by the workman in question, he will lose neither unemployment nor health insurance benefits?

Photo of Mr Geoffrey Shakespeare Mr Geoffrey Shakespeare , Norwich

I require notice of that question.

Photo of Captain William Strickland Captain William Strickland , Coventry

Does the Parliamentary Secretary not realise the difficulty of the workpeople in instituting proceedings in cases like this, as they have neither the funds nor the ability to do so, and, as in these cases the Government insist on a workman paying at the time and he has no alternative but to pay, does the Parliamentary Secretary not think that there ought to be some regulation by which the workmen would not be deprived of benefits?

Photo of Mr Rhys Davies Mr Rhys Davies , Westhoughton

Will the Parliamentary Secretary bear this very important point in mind when drafting the Bill that is now under discussion?