Over PLN 156 billion has been spent on 500 plus from the beginning of its operation – from April 2016. The total costs of servicing the Family 500 plus program amounted to over PLN 1.8 billion, the Ministry of Family and Social Policy reported.
The “Family 500 plus” program was launched on April 1, 2016. Currently, 6.6 million children benefit from it, and the annual cost of this support is PLN 41 billion.
The cost of the Family 500 plus program
According to the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy data, over PLN 156 billion has been spent on the program since its launch. The total cost of servicing the service from 2016 to June 2021 amounted to over PLN 1.8 billion.
Most children benefit from the benefit in the Mazowieckie voivodship (992.1 thousand), Śląskie (703.2 thousand), voiv. Wielkopolskie (636.5 thousand), voivodeship Małopolskie (580.4 thousand) and the province. Lower Silesia (446.2 thousand).
This year, parents who want to benefit from support must apply for a child care benefit. The right to this benefit is determined for the period from June 1 to May 31 of the following year.
According to the Ministry’s data, 4.6 million applications for 500 plus have been submitted so far. In total, 4.2 million decisions on granting benefits were issued.
The application may be submitted via electronic banking, the Empatia portal or PUE ZUS. Applications are also accepted in the traditional way – during a visit to the office or by post.
If the person applying for the child benefit submitted the application with the required documents by June 30, the determination and payment of the granted benefit with compensation from June will take place no later than August 31.
Since the abolition of the income criterion, parents no longer have to document their income situation, and when determining the right to a child benefit, the body providing this benefit relies primarily on the information contained in the application.
The 500 plus benefit is granted from the birth of a child until the child reaches the age of 18. Both children in families and in foster care are entitled to it.
Family 500 plus – work on the amendment
The Ministry of Family and Social Policy is working on an amendment to the Act on State Aid in Raising Children, which regulates the functioning of the Family 500 plus program. The ministry wants applications to be submitted only in electronic form. It is also planned to abandon the annual recruitment and pay benefits only in a non-cash form.
Moreover, according to the proposal, benefits are to be paid by ZUS, not by local governments.
The family ministry estimates that thanks to the planned changes, the costs of the program will decrease and will result in savings for the state budget at the level of approx. PLN 3.1 billion over 10 years.
According to the draft published at the beginning of July, from January 1, 2022, ZUS will pay the child benefits it grants on an ongoing basis, and from February 1, 2022, it will accept applications for subsequent periods, starting from June 1, 2022.
The project is currently at the stage of public consultations.
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