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Volume 930: debated on Wednesday 27 April 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how entitlement under the Government's new pension scheme will be affected by gaps in an individual's contribution record; and if he will make a statement.

Regulations governing this situation will be brought before the House early next Session. It is the Government's intention that, where a contribution record does not justify the payment of full pension, basic pension will be reduced according to the same formula as now applies to the flat-rate pension. The new earnings-related additional pension will not be affected; like the present graduated pension it will be payable regardless of the amount of entitlement to basic pension and even, in certain circumstances where no basic pension is payable at all.