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Clause 11

Part of – in a Public Bill Committee at 6:45 pm on 3rd February 2009.

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Photo of Ian Pearson Ian Pearson Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Economic and Business), Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform, Economic Secretary (Economic and Business), HM Treasury 6:45 pm, 3rd February 2009

Again, the Government share the hon. Gentleman’s desire to see prompt payment. As I said to the hon. Member for Taunton in our discussion on an earlier amendment, the Government want to make speedy progress in such areas. The amendment would fix the period for the payment at one month. However, draft regulations provide that, subject to checking and correction of claims and any further information required to verify a claim, the commissioners will settle timely claims from account providers within seven days. That will enable providers to receive payment from HMRC before they pass it on to account holders.

When the return and claim are submitted late or further information is required to verify a claim, the commissioners will settle the claim subject to checking and correction within seven days of the receipt of the claim or information. No doubt, the matter will be debated when we place the regulations that will specify the time period before the House and the other place. Again, the amendment is a technical detail and it is not appropriate to be put in the Bill, but it is clearly appropriate to question the Government’s intentions in that area and to ensure prompt settlement. I hope my remarks on the envisaged time scales, which we intend to include in regulations, assure the Committee that we will take prompt action.