Departmental Fines

Work and Pensions written question – answered on 25th January 2010.

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Photo of Edward Garnier Edward Garnier Shadow Attorney General

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what powers (a) her Department and (b) each of its agencies and non-departmental public bodies (NDPBs) have to impose administrative penalties; what the statutory basis is for each such power; and how much (i) her Department and its predecessor (ii) each of its agencies and NDPBs have recovered in administrative penalties in each of the last 10 years for which figures are available.

Photo of Jonathan R Shaw Jonathan R Shaw Minister of State (Disabled People), Regional Affairs, Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Disabled People), Department for Work and Pensions

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and local authorities have the power to offer administrative penalties as an alternative to prosecution for benefit fraud. Section 115A of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 provides for an administrative penalty in respect of benefit fraudsters and section 115B provides for an administrative penalty for collusive employers.

The Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission have power to impose penalty payments on non-resident parents who are in arrears with payments of child support maintenance. The power is provided by section 41A of the Child Support Act 1991. No payment penalties have been imposed since the power was commenced in 2003.

The Pensions Regulator has a number of administrative penalties which it can impose. A full list of these penalties has been placed in the Library.

No Administrative penalties were issued by the Pensions Regulator between 2005 and 2009.

The figures in the following table present the amount collected for administrative penalties by the Pensions Regulator since 2005. Amounts collected represent collection of penalties imposed by the Pension Regulator's predecessor, the Occupational Pensions Regulatory Authority (OPRA). Data on amount of penalties collected by OPRA are not available.

Administrative penalties collected by the Pensions Regulator each year
2005-06 4,000
2006-07 5,274
2007-08 8,060
2008-09 3,000
Note: Penalty amounts collected do not correspond to the particular year in which the penalty was issued. Source: Pensions Regulator Accounts.

Information about other amounts of administrative penalties collected is not available.

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