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Incapacity Benefit

Volume 457: debated on Wednesday 7 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the ratio of incapacity benefit to median earnings in the UK was in each year from 1975-76 to 2005-06; and if he will make a statement. (124239)

Information is not available in the format requested. Incapacity benefit, which replaced invalidity benefit and sickness benefit, was introduced in April 1995, and median earnings data from the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) are only available from 1997.

The National Statistics Annual Surveys of Hours and Earnings indicate that the ratio of long term incapacity benefit to gross weekly earnings for all employees has been broadly constant at about 22 per cent. since 1997.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what research he has undertaken into the proportion of working age people in the UK on incapacity benefit in comparison with figures for other EU countries; and if he will make a statement. (124240)

I refer the hon. Gentleman to the written answer I gave him on 21 February 2007, Official Report, columns 794-95W.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what proportion of recipients of incapacity-related benefit received such benefit for (a) mental illness and (b) back pain in each year since 1979-80. (124241)

Information on back pain is not available prior to 1995. The available information is in the following table.

Proportion of invalidity benefit, incapacity benefit and severe disablement allowance claimants with a primary diagnosis of back pain or mental and behavioural disorders at the dates shown

Percentage

Back pain

Mental and behavioural disorders

May 1980

12.5

May 1981

13.7

May 1982

14.1

April 1983

14.7

March 1984

16.7

March 1985

15.7

April 1986

15.8

April 1987

16.5

April 1988

16.5

April 1989

17.2

March 1990

17.7

March 1991

18.1

April 1992

18.6

April 1993

19.3

April 1994

19.6

August 1995

11.7

21.7

August 1996

12.1

24.0

August 1997

12.3

26.4

August 1998

12.3

28.6

August 1999

12.3

30.6

August 2000

12.2

32.2

August 2001

12.1

33.8

August 2002

11.9

35.4

August 2003

11.6

36.8

August 2004

11.3

38.2

August 2005

11.0

39.4

August 2006

10.8

40.3

Notes:

1. March 1980-April 1994 figures are based on a 1 per cent. sample, and are therefore subject to a degree of sampling variation.

2. August 1995-August 1998 (inclusive) percentages have been based on 5 per cent. sample figures uprated to 100 per cent. WPLS totals.

3. August 1999-August 2006 (inclusive) percentages are based on 100 per cent. WPLS figures.

4. Incapacity benefit figures include incapacity benefit credits-only cases.

5. Incapacity benefit replaced invalidity benefit and sickness benefit in April 1995.

Source:

DWP Information Directorate 1 per cent. samples, 5 per cent. samples and 100 per cent. Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study