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Saturday, November 6, 2021
12.4 C
Saturday, November 6, 2021

Benefits for children of EU citizens, know your rights

Lack of compliance with the legal regulations

The article in Daily Telegraph from the 5-th January had the title “David Cameron plans to ban European migrants from claiming child benefit

In this article we read: [pull_quote_center]EU citizens who come to Britain to work are entitled to claim child benefit, even if their children live abroad.[/pull_quote_center]

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And this is the current information which is spread through the media – saying that “they are entitled“.

Changing EU rules on welfare could require a treaty change.

But somehow in the middle of last year – 2014 our Party started receiving disturbing signals from European citizens claiming Child Tax Credit or Child Benefit that they must give evidence that their child lives in The UK or HMRC will stop paying benefits from a certain date.

We took a look the legal regulations and noticed that it can be a breach of the European law legal regulations and international agreements.

On the 18th of July 2014 The Commons Library published Standard Note number SN06561 under the title “Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit for children resident in other European Economic Area countries“. In this note we can read:

[pull_quote_center]Domestic legislation provides that both Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit cannot normally be paid in respect of children resident abroad. However, under provisions in EU law on social security coordination within the European Economic Area (EEA), Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit may be payable to European migrants in the United Kingdom in respect of their dependent children resident in another Member State. The provisions relating to payment of “family benefits” for children resident in another Member State are in EC Regulation 883/2004, but they have a much longer pedigree. The rules apply to all European Economic Area countries, not just the United Kingdom.[/pull_quote_center]

As long as United Kingdom and other European Countries belong to the Union they must follow its own agreements to avoid discrimination of other nationals and avoid building new barriers between the countries.

Unfortunately it seems that someone in the UK forgot to follow the rules which have been agreed with the other countries.

We have a letter from HRMCHer Majesty Revenue & Customs – dated the 1st of January 2015 requesting to deliver until the 14th of February documents showing that a child lives in the UK or – if not – The Child Benefit will be stopped.

We wrote a letter to HRMC but there was not any answer, we called the number from their letter and the person who answered the phone call told us that they do what ministers want from them but was not able to give any details about legal acts or regulations saying why they collect data about children and why they want to stop paying the benefit.

On the governmental web page we can find the information that citizens of European countries are entitled to benefits as those countries have benefits arrangements with the UK.

So the situation is unclear, European citizens do not get basic information about why HRMC want to stop payments. The only answer that comes to our minds is that we are treated as worse category people or someone has already made the decision to stop payments to Europeans. Someone is deciding about us without us and not telling the truth.

To sum up this point we can see the lack of compliance with the EU regulations and agreements, lack of information taxpayers should receive, punishing taxpayers who do not have their child in the UK by stopping supporting them by the system.

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Why the so-called problem is not a problem?

Paying money in the form of child benefit to the children living in other European states was presented in British media as one of the main problems in the last years. In fact the issue is marginal for the country economy as well as for the welfare system.

As we know, the money paid to the children abroad is only 0,03%. It means that if we have 100 pounds for children only 3 pence go abroad. It means 99 pounds and 97 pence are paid for children in Great Britain. I am not saying we should not worry about those 3 pence because in business all money counts and in the country economy as well, but what concerns us is that this marginal issue has been used in media and by the politicians to humiliate us. This is sad.

How do we know that this is only 0,03%? In 2012 a member of parliament Ms Priti Patel from the Conservative Party started fighting us, European citizens.  She asked a Parliamentary Question about child benefits and received details from the Exchequer Secretary. Despite the fact she knew that this is a very small sum in welfare spending, she publicly humiliated us. Daily Star in a October 2012 issue  printed : [pull_quote_center]According to Ms Patel, the fact that EU residents can claim Child Benefit is “an abuse of the benefits system[/pull_quote_center] So if this is abuse, who are we? Abusers!?

In October 2014 The Telegraph informed that  the shadow Work and Pensions secretary Rachel Reeves during a visit to France said “Prime Minister should …bear down on this abuse of our benefits system. He said it is unfair and unaffordable that hard-working people paying into the social security system have to sit back and watch child benefits being sent abroad.

[pull_quote_center]Yes, they sit back and watch – but TV all the day long as we know those are migrants who are hard-working, as it was in a survey. If you want who is work shy in this country just google the frase work-shy people. I believe you will find on the first place in the results the title from Daily Mail: “Yes, too many young Britons are work-shy.[/pull_quote_center]

But these are not the only examples of bullying immigrants. Even the Prime Minister pointed at Polish children as the biggest beneficiary. And this is wrong. It is not only that they are legally entitled. Taxpayers pay the money to the system and receive back something to support their child. This is not someone else who sponsors the child but the taxpayers themselves.

If we are afraid that someone is not paying taxes and gets the benefit maybe it would be better to leave taxpayers more money in their pockets and let them decide how to spend it . But as long as we have legal regulations we have to obey them – the rules are not only for the people – also for the system and it is the people who decide about the world, not the politicians. We can tell them thank you if they do not work for us.

The problem in this country is that the main parties don’t want to represent migrants and have turned against them. But millions of people are of foreign origin, if not directly, then in past generations. And they also feel guilty and sad because of their country of origin or ethnic background. Because politicians are pointing at them saying “they are the problem.”

It’s not fair. How inhuman this is. Mr John Danzig recently had a speech during “I Parcitipate” Conference which was entitled “CONFERENCE – BRINGING MIGRANTS FROM THE OUTSIDE TO THE INSIDE“. He gave many examples about how media are blaming migrants. And this is not only about Child benefits but nearly about everything. This discussion about migrants is a national hysteria now which is a danger for the country as it is damaging its image in the world.

The discussion about migration is currently present in nearly every British home. There are even jokes about the problem like this one:  [pull_quote_center]A banker, a migrant and a UKIP voter are sat around a table. On the table is plate containing 10 biscuits. The banker takes nine of the biscuits and then turns to the UKIP voter and says “watch out there, mate, that migrant is after your biscuit[/pull_quote_center] (http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/business/wasnt-those-benefits-migrants-who-8617202)

Today we have a public debt that has reached £1.4 trillion and an annual deficit (the gap between total income and overall spending) of about £100bn. And the politicians have obsessively been looking for years for 30 millions of pounds in children’s pockets? Well, maybe they need to work better to find benefit fraudsters in this country because they have stolen 1 bn pounds. But for some politicians it is too difficult so they are talking about three biscuits on the table, because it is easier instead of thousands given away to their friends.

What they want us to forget is that in 2008, as a result of reckless casino banking and disastrous investments into complex financial instruments based on the US sub-prime property market, the global economy was brought to the brink of collapse.

Central Banks had to launch rescue operations. Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) was bailed out with £45bn of taxpayers’ money after its ATMs came within hours of running out of cash. That was as quick. Later then it is those at the bottom that must be blamed – the unemployed, the “benefit scroungers”, the migrants.

Total net contribution from the migrants over a decade was £25bn, or £2.5bn a year. These are official data we can provide. And the politicians, starting with Priti Patel from the Conservatives are looking for 30 millions of pounds or 28 millions as some later sources says. How does it look?

The UK Government estimates that tax evasion is currently costing the country £35bn a year – that’s around 7% of total annual tax revenues. Some analysts put the figure at nearer to £70bn. This huge amount of money is 1000 pounds for each citizen or more than 2000 for each working taxpayer every single year. And Europe is not protected.

Maybe taxes should be paid on the border? Billions of pounds are flying over the borders and nobody knows how to catch them. But they know where is a few millions on the table. If there are borders for the people, if children abroad should not get financial support because they live abroad maybe also our taxes should not travel abroad? Why not stop it? We pay the taxes. And more and more as the employment is growing up from 29,4 million hired in 2007 to 29,8 mil in 2012 and now even more.

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And what about opening businesses in the UK

And what about opening businesses in the UK? Only Polish people opened more that 20 k and are still opening more. And they also employ people here. So why does someone create the border for money support for the children in Europe?

[pull_quote_center]It wasn’t those on benefits and migrants who stole our money – it was the bankers and the uber-wealthy[/pull_quote_center] says the title of Liverpool local newspaper from the 10th of Feb. So if this is the case why politicians are using populism in their activity and even those who are saying they support us and are opened for us they keep their mouths shut.

It is not right. People should not be the matter of a political game – they are the people and they give the politicians power. We demand today that someone will stop that sick and unfair discussion which is demonizing migrants and their children.

On the basis of the situation with the child benefits paid abroad we can see how these anti-immigration sentiments are being built.

The rising cost of benefits took place from 1948. Statistic is showing one way – up.

And this is good as also citizens pay bigger taxes, and there are more working people who contribute to the economy and everything costs more. Especially the energy. The rise was 10% per year during recent years and it caused that the prices of products are higher.

But such moves like stopping child benefits paid abroad may cost more than it will bring. We had already the example of increased spending and problems when someone wanted to save money. I am talking about bedroom tax.

Official data announced by Convention of Scottish Local Authorities proved that implementing it was wrong. While in Scotland bedroom tax brought 50 mln the cost of serving the action was 56-58 mln. So those who wanted to save the money lost 6-8 millions as they did not estimate the cost.

If someone thinks that getting back 30 mln of pounds from children abroad doest cost anything is wrong. HRMC already started sending letters demanding documents from taxpayers, then they must process those documents and need many hours of labour for doing it. And we know that labour is not for free. It also requires taxpayers’ money. So there is a risk that instead of leaving the money in taxpayers’ pockets we will be forced to employ more bureaucrats and we will be generating more costs on top of 100 bln deficit. So my point of view is that first of all we all the Europeans should have equal rights as we live in one Europe and help each other instead building walls between us and making barriers in the system.

We have to stop this unfair treatment not only to improve our situation, but also to save the country and save Europe.

A Polish millionaire Mr Szwed who employs here 12 people and some more in Poland said: “I think xenophobia  could deter Poles from working here if it gets any worse.

We noticed recently some adverts from Canadian employers who need Polish workers from the UK. It is because they have more certificates and know English language better than those from Poland. What if those Poles leave the UK will take their taxes with them ? How much will the UK and Europe lose because of that?

We noticed that this never ending discussion about benefits being paid abroad makes British citizens angry, angry at us and it is ruining our relations. It creates not only tensions in communities. It creates the situations that Europeans are being attacked, verbally abused. Nobody wants to explain to British citizens that 30 mln is a lot of money for one person but is really nothing in the country economy. And I have to remind again about our netto contributions to this country which is 2 and a half billion.

Hundreds of millions of pounds are being sent to the most corrupt countries in the world like Nigeria, as financial aid, and millions disappear. At the same time politicians are fighting Europeans in Europe. We don’t know why Ms Priti Patel was raising the problem and started fighting us. In 2015 the finance sent abroad will be more than 12 bln. How much money disappears politicians don’t know and they don’t care. Lots of this money went to Somalia to the regimes who armed Al Qaeda.

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Someone wants bigger contribution?

Someone wants bigger contribution? Ok! So pay us more money and we will pay bigger taxes.

We cannot ignore our big, our huge contribution paid once we sat foot on this land. And this is: us. This is our education, this is the cost of our health services paid by our countries where we grew up. This is food, roads we used there and public buildings. And the bill for these costs equals about 250 000 pounds per person. Yes!

This is the value of our contribution only when we arrived here. This has been calculated. It’s simply unfair in this situation to point at migrants as “scroungers“.  It’s time to ask to repay bills to countries or stop talking about nonsensical actions against migrants. The problem is not that some people migrate for work. The problem is that most of the people do not see world changes.

Only 3% of the active people move somewhere else for work. 97% of people in the world want to sit at home waiting until a desired job comes to them. And they suffer when it does not happen. And look at the United States. In this country moving because of work is also normal. It is not only in the European States where people travel for work.

Leaving a child in a foreign country costs workers more. They have to spend more to see the family and nobody pays them any separation benefit.  Parents in Poland have to spend a lot on buying books for their children in education. Maybe some of them will work for France, Germany, maybe for the UK. It is cheaper for the UK if they get their education there.

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