Incapacity Benefit question, relating to NI contributions


K

keithandsarah

Hello

My Dad (now 60) stopped working in around 2000 (then 53). He took
early retirement. This was due to the fact he'd had enough of working,
but also because he was having eye trouble.

At some point after this (a couple of years later I think), he made a
payment to bring his NI contributions up to the point where he could
get a full state pension when he hits 65.

In late 2006, his eye complaint having steadily gotten worse, he was
registered blind (or severley sight impaired, as I believe this is now
termed).

This week, he applied for incapacity benefit, but was told this was
not going to be possible, as he hadn't made any NI contributions in
recent years.

I'm trying to understand the rationale behind this poilicy....if he
hasn't been able to work due to his eye condition, then how is he
supposed to have made any NI contributions in recent years?

Can anyone clarify why this policy is in place?

He gets the lowest level of Disability Living Allowance £33 (2 X
£16.50), if this makes any difference.

Thanks for any guidance.

Cheers,
Keith.
 
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R

Robbie

Hello

My Dad (now 60) stopped working in around 2000 (then 53). He took
early retirement. This was due to the fact he'd had enough of working,
but also because he was having eye trouble.

At some point after this (a couple of years later I think), he made a
payment to bring his NI contributions up to the point where he could
get a full state pension when he hits 65.

In late 2006, his eye complaint having steadily gotten worse, he was
registered blind (or severley sight impaired, as I believe this is now
termed).

This week, he applied for incapacity benefit, but was told this was
not going to be possible, as he hadn't made any NI contributions in
recent years.

I'm trying to understand the rationale behind this poilicy....if he
hasn't been able to work due to his eye condition, then how is he
supposed to have made any NI contributions in recent years?

Can anyone clarify why this policy is in place?

He gets the lowest level of Disability Living Allowance £33 (2 X
£16.50), if this makes any difference.

Thanks for any guidance.

Cheers,
Keith.
Incapacity Benefit is meant to be a benefit that is (at the point
payment begins) paid to people who have worked fairly recently. The
qualifying condition usually ensures that someone has to have worked in
the past 2 (tax) years or so. In the past people could claim its
forerunners, Sickness and Invalidity Benefit often following a break
from work of several years. This is no longer the case.

I'm afraid that your father will probably not meet the qualifying
conditions and his only recourse to benefit would be via the Pension
Credit which would be means tested.

Is the DLA paid on the grounds of mobility or care needs?
 
K

keithandsarah

Incapacity Benefit is meant to be a benefit that is (at the point
payment begins) paid to people who have worked fairly recently. The
qualifying condition usually ensures that someone has to have worked in
the past 2 (tax) years or so. In the past people could claim its
forerunners, Sickness and Invalidity Benefit often following a break
from work of several years. This is no longer the case.

I'm afraid that your father will probably not meet the qualifying
conditions and his only recourse to benefit would be via the Pension
Credit which would be means tested.

Is the DLA paid on the grounds of mobility or care needs?
Robbie

Thanks for taking the time to reply.

My Dad gets the lowest level of both mobililty and care allowance, at
16.50 for both, giving him £33 a week.

I've found a calculator to work out if he'd qualify on:

http://www.thepensionservice.gov.uk/pensioncredit/calculator/home.asp

I'll get the required numbers from them, and will see what happens
from here.

Thanks for your help.

Cheers,
Keith.
 
R

Robbie

Robbie

Thanks for taking the time to reply.

My Dad gets the lowest level of both mobililty and care allowance, at
16.50 for both, giving him £33 a week.

I've found a calculator to work out if he'd qualify on:

http://www.thepensionservice.gov.uk/pensioncredit/calculator/home.asp

I'll get the required numbers from them, and will see what happens
from here.

Thanks for your help.

Cheers,
Keith.
One thing that may help (it's why I asked about the DLA) is that a
pension credit payment can be increased when certain elements of DLA are
in payment (these are always the care elements) and /or if someone has
been incapable of work for a period of time. There is one poster in this
newsgroup who is knowledgeable about Pension Credit and they might
hopefully be able to advise a bit more about this.
 
K

keithandsarah

One thing that may help (it's why I asked about the DLA) is that a
pension credit payment can be increased when certain elements of DLA are
in payment (these are always the care elements) and /or if someone has
been incapable of work for a period of time. There is one poster in this
newsgroup who is knowledgeable about Pension Credit and they might
hopefully be able to advise a bit more about this.
Robbie

Again, thanks for replying.

According to the calculator, my mother's earnings (not a huge amount,
believe me) are taken into account, and they are not entitled to
anything.

If the calculator is accurate, it's disappointing, but not too
surprising.

Cheers,
Keith.
 
R

Robbie

Robbie

Again, thanks for replying.

According to the calculator, my mother's earnings (not a huge amount,
believe me) are taken into account, and they are not entitled to
anything.

If the calculator is accurate, it's disappointing, but not too
surprising.

Cheers,
Keith.
How many hours does your mother work? Again there may be other
possibilities, such as tax credits. Once again, there are different
rules for different circumstances, but the minimum hours will always be
16 hours for tax credits.
 
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K

keithandsarah

How many hours does your mother work? Again there may be other
possibilities, such as tax credits. Once again, there are different
rules for different circumstances, but the minimum hours will always be
16 hours for tax credits.
Robbie

She works 30 hours a week.

Is it worth looking into tax credits?

Thanks again,
Keith.
 
R

Robbie

Robbie

She works 30 hours a week.

Is it worth looking into tax credits?

Thanks again,
Keith.
I have a feeling her income from 30 hours may be too high but it is
worth looking into... the benefit system only seems to work for people
on very low wages and your mum will be earning at least £150 per week,
based on minimum wages. There is a tax credit calculator at the Revenue
and Customs website that you could try...

http://www.taxcredits.inlandrevenue.gov.uk/HomeNew.aspx

The calculator is quite involved and sometimes hard to fathom (I've
tried it before and got different results with the same information!).

Good luck, it's no wonder people don't get the things they could with so
many different things available and the hoops people have to jump through.
 
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K

keithandsarah

Good luck, it's no wonder people don't get the things they could with so
many different things available and the hoops people have to jump through.
Robbie

The calculator refuses on the basis she only works 25 hours: I had
initially thought she worked 30, but it is in fact 25.

Looks like they fall short on every possible option (except the low
level DLA they already get).

However, thanks for your time...appreciate it.

Cheers,
Keith.
 

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