Clause 2

Part of Welfare Reform Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 5:00 pm on 24th February 2009.

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Photo of Tony McNulty Tony McNulty Minister of State (Employment and Welfare Reform; Minister for London), Department for Work and Pensions 5:00 pm, 24th February 2009

Just to add to the confusion, I am told by this magical process that enlightens Ministers every now and then that the claimant, even in those circumstances, would sue the Secretary of State, who, because of the interplay between subsections (7) and (8), could then go on to sue the provider.

I am grateful that the hon. Gentleman has afforded me time to reflect on these matters, but I think that the original position that I presented of subsections (7) and (8) and their interplay being a clumsy way of making sure that the Secretary of State is still afforded appropriate contractual rights under contract law for those bits that have been contracted out. I believe that the circularity still endures—I will get back to the Committee if that is not the case—the duties lie with the Secretary of State. The circumstances described by the hon. Gentleman would mean, I think, that the individual would sue the Secretary of State and if there was any scope to, not least because of the existence of the part we are referring to, that would afford the Secretary of State the ability to sue the provider.