Background to the programme
Created by the beneficiaries of social minimum allowances, the l’Association de Défense des Usagers de la CAF (ADUCAF) came from a simple assessment: too many users are left alone and defenceless against an overworked administration, rules that are difficult to understand and in ignorance of their rights (to seek legal aid for example). In addition, most associations do not take the defence of their beneficiaries in case of dispute due to their public subsidies.
ADUCAF brings together recipients, retired CAF employees and lawyers. It provides an appropriate response to recipients who are in difficulties in all areas relevant to CAF (integration, housing, disability, solidarity, childhood ...) throughout France.
Objectives of the programme
Provide legal support to all beneficiaries who are in conflict with the Family Allowance Fund (CAF) or the Agricultural Health Mutual (MSA)
- Different forms of ADUCAF assistance (only by appointment):
* Request for aid by an internet form and the ability to obtain free information by phone
* Assistance in the drafting of complaints to the CAF or the Departmental Council
* Assistance in putting together a legal aid file through an internet form (this support enables the state to take charge of the defence costs)
* Lawyers help to submit to the Amicable Appeals Board, acting in summary
proceedings (emergency procedure), submitting to the courts ...
* Mediation Actions: help in submitting to the Defender of Rights or the Mediator at the CAF
- Issues Addressed: administrative inquiry, allowance rebate application (overpayment), housing allowance for students, suspension of payments, lack of response from the administration, forced recovery measures (from the Treasury to recover allowances) ...
- ADUCAF communicates with various associations (pupil parents, family, integration ...) to raise awareness of non-use and to make the ADUCAF actions better known.
Quantitative and qualitative results from the implemented actions
- 650 requests for help received in 2014, 200 were resolved amicably. 350 cases went to dispute.
- Big increase in dossiers put together in 2015 (600 applications received from the 1st semester)
- The most frequent requests concern undue payment notifications and pleas to implement.
Many associations support access to rights for people out of the system (undocumented, complete exclusion ...).
ADUCAF aims for access to rights for people in dispute with the CAF or the MSA
Partnership(s) developed in the context of the programme
- Associations predominantly work in employability, access to housing, social sector
- The CCAS (Lyon and Villeurbanne, and many other French towns)
- Social landlords
Difficulties and/or obstacles encountered during the programme’s implementation :
Lack of human resources to answer questions and an increasing number of disputes.
Solutions used to overcome the difficulties and/or obstacles :
Optimise resources and seek additional material resources.
Summary of factors responsible for the programme’s success :
- Positioning: not intended to replace social services nor to call into question the work of the CAF officials but to monitor the correctness of their decisions
- Volunteers are lawyers specialised in the social protection law or benefit claimants who have experienced difficulties with the administration.
- Intervention along with several associations and federations of pupil parents in metropolitan France and in overseas French territories.
- ADUCAF usually acts free of charge.
- Intervention on all social benefits
Ideas for basic or applied research topics, that could be useful to the programme :
Organisation and functioning of the social benefit service in connection with recipients from a sociological point of view.
To know more
Type of questions posed: CAF refuses to pay your benefits? CAF calls into question the items you have declared? CAF is proceeding with a check of your file? A controller is conducting an investigation of your case? CAF is asking you to repay what you have received? CAF is suspending your rights? CAF has struck you off? CAF is accusing you of fraud? CAF is instituting criminal proceedings against you?