Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Questions (1284)

Fiona O'Loughlin


1284. Deputy Fiona O'Loughlin asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection if an assessment will be made on the pension of a person (details supplied). [13528/19]

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Written answers (Question to Employment)

Since late September 2018, my Department has been examining the social insurance records of approximately 90,000 pensioners, born on or after 1 September 1946, who have a reduced rate State pension contributory entitlement based on post Budget 2012 rate-bands. These payments are being reviewed under a new Total Contributions Approach (TCA) pension calculation which includes provision for homecaring periods.

My Department has written to pensioners in Quarter 4 2018 to explain the review process to them. That letter informed pensioners that wherever possible the Department would use information already held to complete their review and where additional information was required, they would receive a written request.

In January 2019, person concerned received a request for additional information together with details of how to access my Department’s online service to provide the requested information. The person responded online, confirming that they had no HomeCaring periods to claim.

As the person concerned already qualifies for an 85% rate of pension (under the existing yearly average method), it is more financially beneficial for them to remain on their existing rate of payment. A review outcome letter has issued to the person concerned.

I hope this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.