Tuesday, 29 September 2020

Ceisteanna (546)

Aindrias Moynihan

Ceist:

546. Deputy Aindrias Moynihan asked the Minister for Social Protection if a person (details supplied) who earlier in 2020 had their non-contributory pension reviewed and suspended pending the outcome of a review, will have their pension reinstated at the end of September 2020; and if so, if it will be backdated to when they reached pension age and originally applied for pension. [26487/20]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Social)

State pension non-contributory is a means-tested payment for people aged 66 and over, habitually residing in the State, who do not qualify for a state pension contributory, or who only qualify for a reduced rate contributory pension based on their social insurance record.

For the purposes of the means-test, it is necessary at the outset for applicants to provide full details of any income(s), assets, savings and investments they hold. Following the award of pension, a reporting obligation continues to apply whereby the pension recipient (and, where relevant, their qualified adult dependant, personal representative or agent) must notify the Department in a timely manner of any change in their circumstances that may impact on their pension entitlement.

The person concerned applied for state pension non-contributory on 12 February 2020. On 15 April 2020, the pension application was awarded, with effect from 14 February 2020, and the decision was notified to the person in writing on the date of award.

The person’s state pension entitlement was reviewed in May 2020 and they were requested to provide some additional information and supporting documentation. A reasonable timeframe was allowed for reply. As the requested details were not supplied within the timeframe, after a further waiting period, the pension payment was suspended from 2 July 2020.

Following the receipt of the requested information, the person’s state pension non-contributory entitlement has now been reviewed and they have been awarded a higher weekly payment rate of €179.50, with effect from 8 May 2020. Pension payment has being reinstated and will be available for collection at the person’s nominated Post Office, together with arrears due, from Wednesday 30 September 2020.

The person concerned was notified of this revised decision on 22 September 2020, together with the reasons for the decision and their right, if dissatisfied with the decision, to request a review, or to appeal the decision to the independent Social Welfare Appeals Office.

I hope this clarifies the position for the Deputy.

Question No. 547 answered with Question No. 523.