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I hope you find this answer helpful.
In reply to your recent Parliamentary Question about the Child Support Agency, the Secretary of state promised a substantive reply from the Chief Executive.
You asked the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the total expenditure by the Child Support Agency on solicitor legal costs is for each year since 2000-01.
The Agencys accounting system does not report solicitors legal costs in a discreet expense account; as such I am unable to provide the information in the format requested.
Solicitors legal costs are grouped together with court fees and charges into a single expense account code. The total costs of solicitors and court fees in each of the last six financial years is shown in the table below.
|Financial year||£ million|
The increase in legal costs in 2006-07 is a result of the increased legal enforcement action the Agency is undertaking as part of the Operational Improvement Plan.
Information for the 2000-01 financial year is not available as this year falls outside of the legislative requirement to keep accounting records for six years.
I hope you find this answer helpful.
Mr. Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) for what reasons the Child Support Agency offices in Birkenhead and Bolton have different criteria for determining eligibility for an advance payment of arrears; 
In reply to your recent parliamentary questions regarding the Child Support Agency the Secretary of State promised a substantive reply from the chief executive .
You asked the Secretary of State for Work and pensions, for what reasons the Child Support Agency offices in Birkenhead and Bolton have different criteria for determining eligibility for an advance payment of arrears,  and
You asked the Secretary of State for Work and pensions, for what reasons the Child Support Agency Parliamentary Business Unit in Birkenhead are unable to communicate via telephone with the Child Support Agency office in Bolton. 
All cases, including those being managed clerically at the Bolton office, are subject to the same legislative and procedural rules. This includes the decision to make an advance payment where maladministration has occurred and a range of pre-defined criteria are satisfied.
We actively encourage use of the telephone as the primary means of communication between offices to update or discuss particulars on a case. It is only in the case of a complaint being received in the Agency about a clerical case maintained by the Bolton office that, initially, the inquiry is emailed to Bolton. This is to ensure the Bolton office has all the necessary information to progress and resolve the clients concerns. Subsequently, contact should be made by telephone.
I hope you find this answer helpful.
Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what the average processing time for pension schemes applying to qualify for initial payments was under the financial assistance scheme for each month since the scheme began operating; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what the average processing time was for pension schemes applying to qualify for initial payments under the FAS in each month since the scheme began operating; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien: The following table shows the months in which schemes have requested initial payments and the average time taken from the date of request to the date on which the scheme was accepted for initial payments.
|Month of request for initial payments||Average number of days between request and acceptance|
Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what the average processing time was for pension schemes applying to qualify for assistance under the financial assistance scheme in each month since the scheme began operating; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what the average processing time for pension schemes applying to qualify for assistance under the financial assistance scheme has been since the scheme has been operating; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien: In order to obtain a decision on qualification for assistance under the financial assistance scheme, a pension scheme must successfully go through the two stages of notification and qualification. This involves the trustees and administrators providing basic scheme information to the FAS operational unit.
As at 29 June 2007, the average time taken since operations started in September 2005 from receipt at FASOU of a correctly completed application form for qualification to a qualification decision being issued was 47 working days.
Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer from the then Minister of State, Ministry of Justice, of 19 June 2007, Official Report, columns 1713-4W, on Industrial Health and Safety: Coroners, what steps he has taken to ensure that health and safety regulations requiring employers to make a suitable and sufficient assessment of risks to health and safety to which employees are exposed while at work have been carried out by those responsible for coroners and coroners officers. 
Mrs. McGuire [holding answer 12 July 2007]: Coroners are appointed and funded by the relevant local authority. Their officers are employed by the relevant local authority or police authority. Compliance with health and safety requirements for risk assessments relating to their work is a matter for the relevant employer. The Health and Safety Executive continues to work with employers to develop and implement sensible risk controls.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much was spent by the Health and Safety Executive on campaigns to raise awareness of the dangers of working at height in each of the last five years. 
Mrs. McGuire: The HSEs Height Aware campaign 2006 cost about £1.7 million including publicity, promotional events and evaluation of its effectiveness. In 2005 the HSE ran some initiatives focusing on ladder safety costing around £17.500. The HSE is currently building on these with the current Ladder Exchange initiative, for which final costs are not yet available. A falls from height campaign specifically targeting those working in the construction sector was run in 2003-04, costing £275,000. These campaigns were aimed at reducing deaths and serious injuries arising from falls from ladders which cost the British economy more than £60 million a year.
Mr. Mike O'Brien: The FAS operational unit does not hold the precise information requested specifically for schemes in England and Wales as in many cases the principal employer of the underfunded pension schemes are no longer in existence. They have therefore been provided with the address of the scheme trustee, administrator or the official receiver which does not reflect the location of the sponsoring employer of the pension scheme.
Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many and what proportion of pension schemes whose qualification status for the financial assistance scheme is undecided are (a) waiting for scheme trustees to provide additional information before a decision can be made and (b) having their application considered by the Department; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien: As at 6 July 2007 there are a total of 38 pension schemes whose status for the FAS is yet to be decided. Of these, 10 schemes (26 per cent.) are being considered based on the initial information provided by the trustees; we are awaiting further information from the trustees of 15 schemes (40 per cent.) and the remaining 13 schemes (34 per cent.) have indicated that a compromise agreement is in place, so we are unable to progress the application until the legislation to implement the extension to cover these schemes is in place.
Mrs. McGuire: From 10 April 2006, apart from those in receipt of disability living allowance, attendance allowance and carer's allowance, patients receiving free in-patient treatment in NHS hospitals no longer have their benefits reduced to a flat rate figure.
The role of DLA is to help with the extra costs of disability-related needs. These needs are met free of charge by the NHS when someone is in hospital. Payment of DLA for adults therefore stops after four weeks to avoid duplicate provision. However, payment of DLA to children aged under 16 does not stop until after 12 weeks, regardless of their diagnosis. Carer's allowance would also normally continue to be paid to the carer for this 12-week period. The 12-week rule recognises that children may have special needs for support from their parents while they are adjusting to hospital life.
Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many claimants received interest on their 2005 single farm payments for sums paid after 30 June 2006; what the total amount of interest paid was; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Meacher: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the level of (a) carbon dioxide emissions and (b) greenhouse gas equivalent emissions was in the UK in each year since 1990; what the percentage change was in each year; and what the comparable figures and percentages were for (i) the EU, (ii) the US, (iii) China, (iv) Russia, (v) countries in sub-Saharan Africa and (vi) other developing countries. 
Table 1 contains UK CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions, and percentage changes, for each year between 1990 and 2005, the latest year for which data are available. Table 2 contains comparable figures for the EU-15, who have a collective target of -8 per cent. under the Kyoto protocol.
DEFRA does not hold the information requested for the US, China, Russia, sub-Saharan Africa and other developing countries. Emissions estimates are submitted under the United Nations framework convention on climate change, which is the parent treaty for the Kyoto protocol and Montreal decisions. The United States and Russia are both Annex I parties, and are therefore required to submit annual estimates of emissions to the Convention. China, and all African countries, are non-Annex I parties to the convention, and are therefore not required to submit annual emissions estimates. All emissions data submitted to the convention are available on the UNFCCC website.
|Table 1: CO 2 and GHG emissions from the UK|
|GHG emissions (with LULUCF)||Percentage change on previous year||Percentage change on 1990||Net CO 2 emissions including land use, land use change and forestry||Percentage change on previous year||Percentage change on 1990|
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