Former MPs cannot be forced to repay debts to the taxpayer

“OUTRAGE erupted last night as parliamentary watchdogs revealed they have written off £35,000 of debt owed by MPs to the taxpayer.

The Sun can reveal that the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) has given up chasing expenses owed by 15 MPs who lost their seats in last year’s General Election – because of the legal costs in chasing them. …

The £35,000 of debt was 12 times as much as MPs owed the previous year.
In 2016/17 a total of £4,000 of debt owed by 10 MPs was written off. MPs owe the money from when they used their Parliament-issued credit card to claim personal or political purposes – such as hotels in London or for bills that fall outside strict spending rules. …

Ipsa can recover the money from their salary if MPs fail to repay the debt but that becomes harder after MPs are booted out by voters.

An Ipsa source said: “We’re no longer able to recover those costs and the cost of legal action doesn’t make it viable.”

Ipsa said it would only name and shame the former MPs in November.

But campaigners said it was scandalous that while ordinary Brits are harassed and put in prison for debt and unpaid taxes, MPs get away scot-free.”

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