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Pension Credit

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 10th February 2020.

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Photo of Shabana Mahmood Shabana Mahmood Labour, Birmingham, Ladywood

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department has taken to increase the number of people claiming pension credit in the last 12 months; and what progress she has made in increasing that number.

Photo of Guy Opperman Guy Opperman The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

1.6 Million people are already claiming some £5.4 billion in pension Credit. The Government wants to make sure that all pensioners eligible can claim the Pension Credit to which they are rightly entitled. That is why from the 10 February we are launching a nationwide campaign to raise awareness of Pension Credit and encourage those over State Pension age to check whether they’re eligible. The campaign, which will run for 12 weeks, includes a short, animated video that will be shown in GP waiting rooms and in Post Offices. It will also be shown to Facebook users over State Pension Age and be supported by messaging on social media.

We regularly work with our stakeholders to help spread the key messages from the campaign because we know that often the best ways to reach eligible pensioners is through trusted stakeholders working in the community. The Pension Credit toolkit is being updated with the campaign materials to supplement the resources it already contains for those working with pensioners, such as guides to Pension Credit and guidance designed to help older people understand how they could get Pension Credit. The toolkit is designed to help organisations support someone applying for Pension Credit as well as provide ideas for encouraging take-up. It can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pension-credit-toolkit

The Department for Work and Pensions continues to use a wide range of channels including information on www.gov.uk, in leaflets and by telephone to communicate information about benefits including Pension Credit to potential claimants. We target activity on engaging with people who may be eligible to benefits at pivotal stages, such as when they claim State Pension or Attendance Allowance or report a change in their circumstances which may mean that they could be eligible for Pension Credit. In addition, the Pension Credit calculator https://www.gov.uk/pension-credit-calculator enables potential claimants to check if they are likely to be eligible and get an estimate of what they may receive.

The Department for Work and Pensions publishes an annual report detailing latest available statistics regarding the estimated take-up of Pension Credit and other income-related benefits.

The latest version can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/income-related-benefits-estimates-of-take-up-financial-year-2016-to-2017

The next report containing 2017/18 data is currently due to be published at the end of February 2020.

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