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) to pension calculation which includes provision for homecaring periods.
Of those to be reviewed, almost 4,400 are currently in receipt of rates of state pension non-contributory which exceed their personal state pension (contributory) entitlement. Also included, are approximately 2,900 who are currently beneficiaries of higher rate increase for qualified adult payments than their personal entitlement.
Regardless of when a review is conducted, where the rate of State pension contributory now exceeds their current payment, the person will be transferred to the highest payment without delay and arrears issued backdated to 30 March 2018, or the person's 66th birthday if later. Where a person's rate does not increase following review, the person will continue to receive their existing rate of payment.
It will take a number of months to complete the reviews due to the numbers involved and the individual nature of social insurance records. This work will continue until all identified pensioners receive their review outcome.
I hope this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.