Media Release by Senator the Hon Amanda Vanstone

Wayne Swan Wrong Again

The Family Tax Benefit changes announced yesterday give families greater choice over how they receive their payments.

Families’ entitlements have not been changed. No one will be worse off.

Under the Family Tax Benefit system, every family gets exactly what they are entitled to.

Wayne Swan’s claim that families must “either go without payments now (and hope for a catch-up payment in a year’s time) or receive their rightful benefit and run the risk of a huge debt” is simply wrong.

Families who have received their rightful benefit will have got just that – their rightful benefit. They won’t need a top-up and they won’t have an overpayment.

Families only have an overpayment if they have received more than their rightful entitlement throughout the year.

Families who choose to take less during the year will get a top-up. Labor didn’t top up people who were underpaid.

Yet again, Mr Swan is scaring families for his own political purposes.

The changes announced yesterday are about choice and will see the number of overpayments greatly reduced.