Written Answers - Social Welfare Benefits

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 740 No. 3

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  267.  Deputy Barry Cowen  Information on Barry Cowen  Zoom on Barry Cowen   asked the Minister for Social Protection  Information on Joan Burton  Zoom on Joan Burton   when a person (details supplied) in County Offaly may expect a decision on back to school clothing and footwear allowance. [24815/11]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton  Zoom on Joan Burton  The person concerned has been awarded a back to school clothing and footwear allowance and a payment issued to their nominated Post Office on 10 September 2011.

  268.  Deputy Barry Cowen  Information on Barry Cowen  Zoom on Barry Cowen   asked the Minister for Social Protection  Information on Joan Burton  Zoom on Joan Burton   when a person (details supplied) in County Offaly may expect a decision on back to school clothing and footwear allowance. [24816/11]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton  Zoom on Joan Burton  The Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance (BSCFA) scheme operates from the beginning of June until the end of September each year.

The administrative arrangements for the 2011 BSCFA scheme differ from those that applied in previous years. For this year, the majority of BSCFA entitlements were fully automated with no application form required from customers, 127,000 households in respect of over 250,000 children received their payment automatically in June.

Those customers who did not receive an automated payment are required to complete and return an application form to the Department. The timescale for determining applications for Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance claims is dependent on a number of factors including: the number of applications received, when the application is lodged, the availability of the required information such as details of the applicant’s income, bank statements and other relevant information regarding an individual’s application.

In addition, some aspects of the applications are inevitably time consuming and delays can occur where further investigations or third party evidence is required. Delays can also arise if the applicant is slow to respond to requests for additional information.

Staff are working as quickly as possible on clearing the large volume of manual application claims received. Based on the current volume of applications it could take up to 7 weeks from date of receipt to process claims. Departmental records show that an application form was received from the persons concerned on 8 August 2011 and it is expected they will be notified of the outcome of his claim shortly.

  269.  Deputy Barry Cowen  Information on Barry Cowen  Zoom on Barry Cowen   asked the Minister for Social Protection  Information on Joan Burton  Zoom on Joan Burton   when a person (details supplied) in County Offaly may expect a decision on a back to school clothing and footwear allowance. [24817/11]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton  Zoom on Joan Burton  The person concerned has been awarded a back to school clothing and footwear allowance and a payment issued to their nominated account on 10 September 2011.

  270.  Deputy Barry Cowen  Information on Barry Cowen  Zoom on Barry Cowen   asked the Minister for Social Protection  Information on Joan Burton  Zoom on Joan Burton   when a person (details supplied) in County Offaly may expect a decision on a back to school clothing and footwear allowance. [24818/11]

[1029]Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton  Zoom on Joan Burton  The person concerned has been awarded a back to school clothing and footwear allowance and a payment issued to their nominated Post Office on 17 August 2011.


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