Access to Pension Credit

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 5:12 pm on 24th July 2019.

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Photo of Guy Opperman Guy Opperman The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 5:12 pm, 24th July 2019

I will not give way because I only have a minute before the hon. Member for Ogmore will make his closing remarks. There are other reasons, and I urge hon. Members to publicise pension credit. I urge the voluntary organisations, which are the most trusted organisations in a community, to support the processes. We use a variety of channels to communicate information about benefits, whether pension credit or other benefits. People can check whether they are likely to be entitled using the online calculator on gov.uk, or they can make a claim by calling a freephone number.

We engage with people who may be eligible for benefits at pivotal stages, such as when they are approaching state pension age. An accompanying leaflet contains information about pension credit and advice on how to check eligibility, and a freephone telephone number if they wish to discuss their pension credit entitlement. We also target those who report a change of circumstances. We know that the best way to reach eligible customers is through trusted stakeholder organisations, which may be best placed to understand the local circumstances and needs in their communities. That is why I strongly recommend the online toolkit for the agencies and individuals, but I welcome the opportunity to discuss this matter.

The Government are committed to increasing the number if at all possible. I thank the hon. Gentleman for raising the debate, and I wish him very well in his future married life.