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Volume 892: debated on Wednesday 14 May 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how long it would take for a single person earning (a) £20 per week, (b) £30 per week, from when the provisions of the Social Security Pensions Bill come into operation to build up a basic and additional component totalling together £6·90 per week.

Under the rules in the Social Security Act 1975, which remain unchanged by the Social Security Pensions Bill, a man's retirement pension will contain a basic component of slightly more than £6·90 if his working life included 26 qualifying years, while a woman's basic component will exceed £6·90 if her record included 24 qualifying years. The figures assume in each case that insurance began with the tax year containing the sixteenth birthday, and, as regards the new scheme, no account is taken of years of home responsibility. No simple answer can be given as to when a man or woman might qualify for a basic and an additional component which together total £6·90, since this depends not only on the number of qualifying years but also on how many of these were before, and how many after, the start of the new scheme.