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Pensioners: Council Tax Benefits

Volume 462: debated on Wednesday 27 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the number of eligible pensioners in Stoke-on-Trent who do not claim council tax benefit; and what steps he is taking to reduce this number. (145353)

Estimates of take-up are not available below the level of Great Britain. The latest estimates of the take-up of the main income-related benefits: income support, pension credit, housing benefit, council tax benefit and jobseeker’s allowance (income-based) in Great Britain can be found in the DWP report entitled “Income Related Benefits Estimates of Take-Up in 2004-05”. Copies of the publication are available in the Library.

We are taking steps to improve awareness and take-up of benefits for specific groups. For example, The Pension Service is undertaking a wide range of steps to encourage eligible pensioners to claim pension credit, including writing to everyone who may have an entitlement and encouraging them to apply. All pensioners applying for pension credit can now access housing benefit and council tax benefit over the phone at the same time.