Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Questions (408)

Willie O'Dea


408. Deputy Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the status of the 2012 pension review; the number of persons to date who had their pensions reviewed; the number of persons still awaiting their pension to be reviewed; the percentage of persons who received an increase in their pension following the review; the percentage of such persons who received an increase of €20 or more; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [30417/19]

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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) to pension calculation which includes provision for homecaring periods.

Reviews commenced from 13 February 2019, the day after I signed the necessary Regulations which, together with provisions in the Social Welfare, Pensions and Civil Registrations Act 2018, allows the increased payments to be made.  As at 4 July 2019, 77,193 reviews have been completed.   Of these, 42% pensioners received an increase in their rate of payment and 58% are remaining on their existing rate of payment.

The detailed breakdown requested by the Deputy is not readily available, however based on an analysis of sample of cases where an increase was awarded, the best estimate at this stage is that 51% of those who received an increase received a weekly increase in excess of €20.00.  

I hope this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.