Family Allowances Act 1945

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
Citation1945 c. 41


Family Allowances Act, 1945.

(8 & 9 Geo. 6.) CHAPTER 41.

An Act to provide for the payment of family allowances.

[15th June 1945]

Be it enacted by the King's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

Grant of family allowances.

Grant of family allowances.

S-1 Direction for payment, and amount, of allowances.

1 Direction for payment, and amount, of allowances.

1. Subject to the provisions of this Act, there shall be paid by the Minister, out of moneys provided by Parliament, for every family which includes two or more children and for the benefit of the family as a whole, an allowance in respect of each child in the family other than the elder or eldest at the rate of five shillings a week.

S-2 Meaning of ‘child.’

2 Meaning of ‘child.’

(1) A person shall be treated for the purposes of this Act as a child—

(a ) during any period whilst he or she is under the upper limit of the compulsory school age; and

(b ) during any period before the first day of August next following the day on which he or she attains the age of sixteen years whilst he or she is undergoing full-time instruction in a school, or is an apprentice.

(2) For the purposes of this section—

(a ) the upper limit of the compulsory school age means the age that is for the time being that limit by virtue of section thirty-five of the Education Act, 1944, together with any Order in Council made under that section or any order made under subsection (3) of section one hundred and eight of that Act;

(b ) a person who at any time attains the upper limit of the compulsory school age shall not be treated as being under that limit at any time thereafter, notwithstanding any subsequent change in that limit;

(c ) a person who becomes an apprentice after an interval of not more than one month from attaining the upper limit of the compulsory school age, or from ceasing to undergo full-time instruction in a school, shall be treated as having been an apprentice throughout the interval.

S-3 Meaning of ‘family.’

3 Meaning of ‘family.’

(1) Subject to the provisions of this Act, each of the following shall be treated for the purposes of this Act as constituting a family, that is to say—

(a ) a man and his wife living together, any child or children being issue of theirs, his or hers, and any child or children being maintained by them;

(b ) a man not having a wife or not living together with his wife, any child or children being issue of his, and any child or children being maintained by him; and

(c ) a woman not having a husband or not living together with her husband, any child or children being issue of hers, and any child or children being maintained by her.

In this Act the expression ‘issue’ means issue of the first generation.

(2) It shall be a condition of a child's being treated as included in a family as being issue of the man and his wife or one of them, of the man, or of the woman (according as the family falls within paragraph (a ), (b ) or (c ) of subsection (1) of this section) that the child is living with them, with him or with her, as the case may be, or, if not, that the cost of providing for the child is contributed to by them taken together, by him, or by her, as the case may be, at the rate of five shillings a week or more.

(3) The provisions of the Schedule to this Act shall have effect as to the circumstances in which a man and his wife living together, or such a man or woman as is mentioned in paragraph (b ) or (c ) of subsection (1) of this section, is to be treated as maintaining a child; and for determining as between parents and persons maintaining children, or as between one parent of a child and the other, in what family a child is to be treated as included.

S-4 Persons to whom allowances are to be paid.

4 Persons to whom allowances are to be paid.

(1) Allowances for any family shall belong—

(a ) in the case of the family of a man and his wife living together, to the wife, subject however to the provisions of subsections (2) and (3) of this section;

(b ) in the case of the family of such a man as is mentioned in paragraph (b ) of subsection (1) of the last preceding section, to him;

(c ) in the case of the family of such a woman as is mentioned in paragraph (c ) of subsection (1) of the last preceding section, to her.

(2) Sums to be paid on account of an allowance for the family of a man and his wife living together shall be receivable either by the man or by the wife.

(3) If in the case of a man and his wife living together a court of summary jurisdiction is satisfied on a representation made to the court by way of complaint by either of them, or by the Minister or the local authority, that one of them is not, as against the other, a proper recipient of allowances for their family, the court may order that sums on account of allowances for their family becoming receivable after the expiration of fourteen days from the date of the order shall, notwithstanding anything in the last preceding subsection, be receivable, as between them, by the other only, and any order made under this subsection may be revoked or varied by a subsequent order of a court of summary jurisdiction on a representation made as aforesaid.

(4) The Summary Procedure (Domestic Proceedings) Act, 1937, shall apply to proceedings under the last preceding subsection as if such proceedings were included in the proceedings specified in the Schedule to that Act.

(5) It shall be the duty of a court of summary jurisdiction to send notification to the Minister of any order made by them under subsection (3) of this section as soon as may be after the order is made.

(6) The local authority for the purposes of subsection (3) of this section shall be, in the case of a county borough, the borough council, and elsewhere the county council.

Claims, duration of allowances, and payment.

Claims, duration of allowances, and payment.

S-5 Determination of questions as to right to allowances.

5 Determination of questions as to right to allowances.

(1) Subject to the provisions of this Act and in accordance with regulations made thereunder, all claims for or in respect of allowances shall be made to the Minister, and any question as to the right to an allowance in respect of any person for any family shall be decided by him.

(2) If any person is dissatisfied by the award or decision of the Minister in respect of an allowance (whether as made or given or as revised under the next succeeding subsection), the question shall, on application being made in such manner and within such time as may be prescribed, be referred to one or more referees selected from a panel, and the decision of the referee or referees shall be final:

Provided that—

(a ) this subsection shall not apply to a decision given by the Minister as respects any matter which by this Act is to be within his discretion, or to be certified by him or for deciding an issue which by this Act depends on any facts being shown to his satisfaction;

(b ) the provisions of section nine of the Arbitration Act, 1934 (which relates to the statement of cases for the decision of the court), shall apply in relation to a reference under this section, with the substitution for references in that section to an arbitrator and to his award of references to a referee or referees and to his or their decision.

(3) The Minister may at any time and from time to time revise any award made or decision given by him under this Act, if it appears to him that the award or decision was erroneous either in view of further information which has been brought to his notice since the date on which it was made or given as to the circumstances existing at the time by reference to which it was made or given, or by reason of some mistake having been made with respect to those circumstances or to the law:

Provided that this subsection shall not apply to an award or decision relating to a matter which has been referred under this section, or until the time has expired for making an application to have the matter to which the award or decision relates so referred, unless the person on whose application the reference was made, or who is entitled to apply to have the matter referred, as the case may be, consents, and this subsection shall not apply to an award made by the Minister for the purpose of giving effect to a decision given by a referee or referees, unless the person to whom the allowance in question belongs consents.

(4) If in any case in which a decision has been given by a referee or referees with respect to a matter referred under this section it appears to the Minister that the decision might properly be reconsidered in view either of further information which has been brought to his notice since the date on which it was given as to the circumstances existing at the time by reference to which it was given, or of any apparent inconsistency between the decision and any other decision subsequently given either by the court or by a referee or referees, he may cause the decision to be referred to one or more referees selected from the panel aforesaid, and he or they may revise the decision.

(5) The mode and terms of appointment of persons to be members of the said panel, the mode of selecting a referee or referees therefrom for the purpose of any particular reference, and the procedure to be followed on a reference, shall be such as may be prescribed, and the regulations prescribing the procedure may apply for the purposes of any reference any of the provisions of the Arbitration Acts, 1889 to 1934, and may exclude the application of any other provisions of those Acts (except the...

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