[holding answer 8 October 2007]: In the exercise that ran for 12 months from 27 September 2004 DWP wrote to pensioners who
reached state pension age between 6 April 1998 and 24 October 2004; and
were not receiving a full basic state pension in their own right, or not receiving a pension; and
had a deficient national insurance contribution record in any of the years between 1996-97 and 2001-02; and would have received a deficiency notice from HMRC.
The Department also wrote to
those customers living abroad who were also in the United Kingdom at the time and met the criteria above;
customers reaching state pension age between 6 April 2004 and 24 October 2004 who had a deficient national insurance contribution in their final relevant year tax year 2003-04 and 2002-03;
customers who had already paid voluntary class 3 national insurance contributions at either the standard rate or the higher rate and who were refunded the difference, and
customers who had paid voluntary class 3 national insurance contributions and did not have their state pension backdated to state pension age in line with the easements introduced with this exercise.
only those customers who could benefit from the payment of class 3 national insurance contributions were contacted.
The Department does not hold management information on the gender split of letters issued during this exercise.