1 Citation, commencement, interpretation and extent

(1)    These Regulations may be cited as the National Health Service (Optical Charges and Payments) and (General Ophthalmic Services) Amendment Regulations 2003.

(2)    Subject to paragraph (3), these Regulations shall come into force on 1st April 2003.

(3)    Regulations 2 to 4 and 8 to 10 shall come into force on 6th April 2003.

(4)    In these Regulations—

“the Optical Regulations” means the National Health Service (Optical Charges and Payments) Regulations 1997; and

“the Ophthalmic Regulations” means the National Health Service (General Ophthalmic Services) Regulations 1986.

(5)    These Regulations apply to England only.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 1 April 2003: see para (2) above.

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see para (5) above.

Medical Procedure & Treatment92 Health Law92

2 Amendment of regulation 1 of the Optical Regulations

Part1Amendments of Optical Regulations 2Amendment of regulation 1 of the Optical Regulations

In regulation 1 of the Optical Regulations (citation, commencement and interpretation), in sub-paragraph (2)—

(a)    after the definition of “child”, there is inserted—

““child tax credit” means child tax credit under the Tax Credits Act 2002;”;

(b)    after the definition of “complex appliance”, there is inserted—

““disability element” means the disability element of working tax credit as specified in section 11(3) of the Tax Credits Act 2002;”;

(c)    after the definition of “the 1989 regulations”, there is inserted—

““relevant income” has the same meaning as in section 7(3) of Part 1 of the Tax Credits Act 2002;”;

(d)    after the definition of “voucher”, there is inserted—

““working tax credit” means working tax credit under the Tax Credits Act 2002.”; and

(e)    the definitions of “amount withdrawn”, “disabled person's tax credit” and “working families' tax credit” are omitted.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 6 April 2003: see reg 1(3).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

Tax Credits97 Income Tax Allowances, Deductions & Reliefs95 Personal Taxes96 Tax Law96 Income Tax95

3 Amendment of regulation 8 of the Optical Regulations

3Amendment of regulation 8 of the Optical Regulations

(1)    Regulation 8 of the Optical Regulations (eligibility—supply of optical appliances) is amended as follows.

(2)    In paragraph (3)—

(a)    at the end there is added—

“(l)    he is a member of a family—

(i)    one member of which is receiving—

(aa)    working tax credit and child tax credit;

(bb)    working tax credit which includes a disability element; or

(cc)    child tax credit, but is not eligible for working tax credit; and

(ii)    where the relevant income of the person or persons to whom an award of a tax credit is made under section 14 of the Tax Credits Act 2002 is determined at the time of the award not to exceed £14,200; or

(m)    he is a member of a family, in respect of whom there is a current notice of entitlement under regulation 12A.”;

(b)    sub-paragraphs (c), (d), (g) and (h) are omitted.

(3)    For paragraph (4) there is substituted—

“(4)    In paragraph—

(a)    in sub-paragraphs (b) and (f), “family” has the meaning given to it by section 137(1) of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992, as it applies to income support;

(b)    in sub-paragraph (j), “family” has the meaning given to it by section 35 of the Jobseekers Act 1995; and

(c)    in sub-paragraphs (1) and (m), “family” has the meaning given to it by regulation 2(2) of the Tax Credits (Definition and Calculation of Income) Regulations 2002.”.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 6 April 2003: see reg 1(3).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

Tax Credits95 Income Tax Allowances, Deductions & Reliefs94 Personal Taxes95 Tax Law95 Income Tax94

4 New regulation 12A inserted into the Optical Regulations

4New regulation 12A inserted into the Optical Regulations

After regulation 12 of the Optical Regulations (use of vouchers for supply of optical appliances), there is inserted—

“12A

(1)    Where a person is entitled to the payment of, or contribution towards, the cost incurred for the supply of an optical appliance because he is a member of a family described in regulation 8(3)(1), the Secretary of State shall issue a notice of entitlement to that family.

(2)    Such a notice of entitlement shall apply to—

(a)    any family member who is named in the notice of entitlement; and

(b)    any other member of such a person's family.

(3)    A notice of entitlement issued under paragraph (1) shall be effective—

(a)    from such date; and

(b)    for such period,

as the Secretary of State may determine.

(4)    Any change in the financial or other circumstances of a person who is a member of a family in respect of which a notice of entitlement has been issued under paragraph (1), during the period for which the notice of entitlement has been issued, shall not affect the validity of the notice of entitlement in respect of that period.”.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 6 April 2003: see reg 1(3).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

5 Amendment of regulation 19 of the Optical Regulations

5Amendment of regulation 19 of the Optical Regulations

In regulation 19 of the Optical Regulations (redemption value of voucher for replacement or repair)—

(a)    in paragraph (1)(b) for “£44.60” there is substituted “£45.70”; and

(b)    in paragraph (3) for “£11.50” there is substituted “£11.80”.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 1 April 2003: see reg 1(2).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

6 Amendment of the Schedules to the Optical Regulations

6Amendment of the Schedules to the Optical Regulations

(1)    In Schedule 1 to the Optical Regulations (voucher letter codes and face values—supply and replacement), in column (3) (face value of voucher), for each amount specified in column 1 of the table below there is substituted the amount specified in relation to it in column 2 of that table.

Table
(1) Old amount(2) New amount
£30.50£31.30
£46.40£47.60
£63.20£64.80
£142.70£146.30
£52.70£54.00
£67.00£68.70
£81.00£83.00
£157.00 (in both places where it appears)£160.90
£44.60£45.70

(2)    In Schedule 2 to the Optical Regulations (prisms, tints, photochromic lenses, small and special glasses and complex appliances)—

(a)    in paragraph 1(1)(a) for “£9.90” there is substituted “£10.10”;

(b)    in paragraph 1(1)(b) for “£11.90” there is substituted “£12.20”;

(c)    in paragraph 1(1)(c) for “£3.30” there is substituted “£3.40”;

(d)    in paragraph 1(1)(d) for “£3.80” there is substituted “£3.90”;

(e)    in paragraph 1(1)(e)—

(i)    for “£50.20” there is substituted “£51.50”,

(ii)    for “£44.60” there is substituted “£45.70”, and

(iii)    for “£24.20” there is substituted “£24.80”;

(f)    in paragraph 1(1)(g) for “£50.20” there is substituted “£51.50”;

(g)    in paragraph 2(a) for “£10.70” there is substituted “£11.00”; and

(h)    in paragraph 2(b) for “£27.00” there is substituted “£27.70”.

(3)    For Schedule 3 to the Optical Regulations (voucher values—repair), there is substituted the Schedule 3 set out in the Schedule to these Regulations.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 1 April 2003: see reg 1(2).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

7 Application of Regulations 5 and 6

7Application of Regulations 5 and 6

The amendments made in regulations 5 and 6 of these Regulations apply only in relation to a voucher accepted or used pursuant to regulation 12 or regulation 17 of the Optical Regulations on or after 1st April 2003.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 1 April 2003: see reg 1(2).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

8 Amendment of regulation 2 of the Ophthalmic Regulations

Part2Amendments of Ophthalmic Regulations 8Amendment of regulation 2 of the Ophthalmic Regulations

In regulation 2 of the Ophthalmic Regulations (interpretation), in sub-paragraph (1)—

(a)    after the definition of “capital limit”, there is inserted—

““child tax credit” means child tax credit under the Tax Credits Act 2002;”;

(b)    after the definition of “director”, there is inserted—

““disability element” means the disability element of working tax credit as specified in section 11(3) of the Tax Credits Act 2002;”;

(c)    after the definition of “qualifications”, there is inserted—

““relevant income” has the same meaning as in section 7(3) of Part 1 of the Tax Credits Act 2002;”;

(d)    in the definition of “notice of entitlement” after “regulation 7” there is inserted “or 7ZA”;

(e)    after the definition of “the Tribunal”, there is inserted—

““working tax credit” means working tax credit under the Tax Credits Act 2002.”; and

(f)    the definitions of “amount withdrawn”, “disabled person's tax credit” and “working families' tax credit” are omitted.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 6 April 2003: see reg 1(3).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

Tax Credits97 Income Tax Allowances, Deductions & Reliefs95 Personal Taxes96 Tax Law96 Income Tax95

9 Amendment of regulation 13 of the Ophthalmic Regulations

9Amendment of regulation 13 of the Ophthalmic Regulations

(1)    Regulation 13 of the Ophthalmic Regulations (sight tests—eligibility) is amended as follows.

(2)    In paragraph (2)—

(a)    at the end there is added—

“(l)    he is a member of a family—

(i)    one member of which is receiving—

(aa)    working tax credit and child tax credit,

(bb)    working tax credit which includes a disability element, or

(cc)    child tax credit, but is not eligible for working tax credit, and

(ii)    where the relevant income of the person or persons to whom an award of a tax credit is made under section 14 of the Tax Credits Act 2002 is determined at the time of the award not to exceed £14,200; or

(m)    he is a person in respect of whom there is a current notice of entitlement.”; and

(b)    sub-paragraphs (c), (d), (g) and (h) are omitted.

(3)    For paragraph (3) there is substituted—

“(3)    In paragraph (2)—

(a)    in sub-paragraphs (b) and (f), “family” has the meaning given to it by section 137(1) of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992, as it applies to income support;

(b)    in sub-paragraph (j), “family” has the meaning given to it by section 35 of the Jobseekers Act 1995; and

(c)    in sub-paragraph (l), “family” has the meaning given to it by regulation 2(2) of the Tax Credits (Definition and Calculation of Income) Regulations 2002.”.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 6 April 2003: see reg 1(3).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

Tax Credits95 Income Tax Allowances, Deductions & Reliefs94 Personal Taxes95 Tax Law95 Income Tax94

10

Part3Transitional Provision 10

(1)    Until 31st July 2003, notwithstanding the revocation of regulation 8(3)(c), (d), (g) and (h) of the Optical Regulations, any person who, immediately before the coming into force of regulations 2 to 4 of these Regulations, was an eligible person under regulation 8(3)(c), (d), (g) and (h) of the Optical Regulations shall continue to be an eligible person for the purposes of Parts IV and V of the Optical Regulations.

(2)    Until 31st July 2003, notwithstanding the revocation of regulation 13(2)(c), (d), (g) and (h) of the Ophthalmic Regulations, any person who, immediately before the coming into force of regulation 8 and 9 of these Regulations, was an eligible person under regulation 13(2)(c), (d), (g) and (h) of the Ophthalmic Regulations shall continue to be an eligible person.

NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 6 April 2003: see reg 1(3).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

Signature

Signed by authority of the Secretary of State for Health

David Lammy

Parliamentary Under Secretary of State,

Department of Health

11th March 2003

SCHEDULE Schedule 3 to the Optical Regulations as Substituted by these Regulations

SCHEDULE  Schedule 3 to the Optical Regulations as Substituted by these Regulations Regulation 6SCHEDULE 3 Regulation 19(2) and (3)
VOUCHER VALUES—REPAIR
(1)
Nature of Repair
(2)
Letter Codes—Values
ABCDEFGH & I
££££££££
Repair or replacement
of one lens
9.7517.9026.5067.2521.1028.4535.6074.55
Repair or replacement
of two lenses
19.4535.7553.00134.5042.2556.9071.25149.15
Repair or replacement
of:
The front of a frame10.0010.0010.0010.0010.0010.0010.0010.00
A side of a frame5.955.955.955.955.955.955.955.95
The whole frame11.8011.8011.8011.8011.8011.8011.8011.80
NOTES
Initial Commencement
Specified date

Specified date: 1 April 2003: see reg 1(2).

Extent

These Regulations apply to England only: see reg 1(5).

EXPLANATORY NOTE

EXPLANATORY NOTE (This note is not part of the Regulations)

These Regulations further amend the National Health Service (Optical Charges and Payments) Regulations 1997, which provide for payments to be made by means of a voucher system in respect of costs incurred by certain categories of persons in connection with the supply, replacement and repair of optical appliances.

Regulations 2 and 3 make amendments to regulation 1 (citation, commencement and interpretation) and 9 (eligibility—supply of optical appliances) of the National Health Service (Optical Charges and Payments) Regulations 1997 (“the Optical Regulations”) consequent on the abolition of disabled person's tax credit and working family tax credit and their replacement by child tax credit and working tax credit by the Tax Credits Act 2002.

Regulation 4 inserts a new regulation 12A into the Optical Regulations to provide for the Secretary of State to issue notices of entitlement based on entitlement to the new child tax credit and working tax credit.

Regulation 5 amends regulation 19 of the Optical Regulations to increase the redemption value of a voucher issued towards the cost of replacement of a single contact lens and to increase the maximum contribution by way of a voucher to the cost of repair of a frame.

Regulation 6 increases the amounts contained in Schedules 1 and 2 to the Optical Regulations, and substitutes a new Schedule 3 into the Optical Regulations to increase the value of vouchers issued towards the cost of the repair and replacement of optical appliances. The rate of increase in both regulations 5 and 6 is, on average, 2.5%.

Regulation 7 provides that the increases contained in regulations 5 and 6 only apply in relation to vouchers accepted or used on or after 1 April 2003.

Regulations 8 and 9 make amendments to regulation 2 (interpretation) and 13 (sight tests—eligibility) of the National Health Service (General Ophthalmic Services) Regulations 1986 consequent on the abolition of disabled person's tax credit and working family tax credit and their replacement by child tax credit and working tax credit by the Tax Credits Act 2002.

Regulation 10 makes transitional provision for those persons who were entitled to the payment of, or contribution towards, the cost for the supply of an optical appliance or eligible for a sight test by virtue of being in receipt of one of the old tax credits or being a member of a family of such a person.

Tax Credits96 Income Tax Allowances, Deductions & Reliefs95 Personal Taxes97 Medical Procedure & Treatment92 Income Tax95 Health Law92 Tax Law97