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Pension Credit

Volume 406: debated on Thursday 5 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what steps he has taken on pensions to ensure that all those potentially eligible for the pension credit are individually advised of their right to claim. [115401]

The Pension Service has begun to write to pensioner households to explain pension credit and to invite applications. Around £1.8 million people who currently receive the minimum income guarantee have been told that they will be transferred automatically to pension credit, ready for payments to be made from October 2003. In addition, by June 2004, around £6.8 million pensioner households will have been issued with a direct mail pack. This systematic approach will be supported by regional and national advertising.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many pension credit direct mailing packs have been distributed; and of those, how many pension credit applications have been received via (a) the pension credit hotline and (b) other methods. [116723]

As at 25 May 2003, around 64,000 pension credit direct mail packs have been issued to pensioners. Of these, around 15,000 applications have been taken by the pension credit application line and a small number of applications have been completed through the Pension Service local service teams.The advance application period has been running for only seven weeks. Since there is a time lag between the issue of the mail pack and the subsequent completion

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Aberdeen city councilMerseyside Pension FundCountrywide Assd Vax
Aircraft Research Ass Ltd.MISYSLiverpool Victoria Friendly Society
Albany International Ltd.MolinsPrudential
Alusuisse HoldingsNationwide Pension Fund
Aspen PlcNEC Staff Pension Scheme
Bacon & WoodrowNORTEL Networks UK Pension Trust Ltd.
Barnet CCNorthern Lighthouse Board
Cable & WirelessOxford Instruments
Capita HartsheadPartridge Muir & Warren
Caterpillar UK Ltd.Nationwide Pension Fund
DWP PCSPSReliance Mutual
DWP CheshireRexam PLC
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EMAPShilling Communications
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The BOC Group
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J Sainsbury PlcWoodgate Fulfilment Ltd.
Kent county council
London—Scottish Fund
Menzies Distribution Ltd.