Marriage Guidance

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 6th March 2020.

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Photo of Baroness Howe of Idlicote Baroness Howe of Idlicote Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government how much money has been spent under section 22 of the Family Law Act 1996 on (1) the provision of marriage support services, (2) research into the causes of marital breakdown, and (3) the research into ways of preventing marital breakdown, for every financial year since the Act was passed.

Photo of Baroness Stedman-Scott Baroness Stedman-Scott The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

As policy responsibility for relationship issues has moved between departments several times since 1996, the information requested is not readily available and to provide it would incur disproportionate cost.

The policy responsibility for relationship issues currently sits with the Department for Work and Pensions. The Department does not make grants under section 22 of the Family Law Act (1996). However, we have funded a range of work to help couples (including those who are married) to improve the quality of their relationships.

Since responsibility for this area moved to the Department, we have spent the following in each financial year:

2014/15 - £7.5 million

2015/16 - £11.2 million

2016/17 - £6.3 million

2017/18 - £5.24 million

2018/19 - £15.85 million

2019/20 current forecast - £10.2 million

Currently, these services are focused on the specific issue of parental conflict, and are delivered through our Reducing Parental Conflict programme.

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