HC Deb 25 February 1976 vol 906 cc269-70W
Mr. Hordern

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services by how much employers' and employees' contributions would have to rise to compensate for inflation since 5th April 1975 if their present proportionate contributions to the stamp were maintained.

Mr. O'Malley

National insurance contributions for employers and employees are now earnings-related and rise automatically in line with earnings, subject to the need for periodic adjustment of the upper limit of earnings on which contributions are levied.

The rates and levels of contributions for 1976–77 are set out in the Social Security (Contributions, Re-rating) Order 1975 (1975 No. 1829). Under the Order, the rates of contributions for employers and employees will be 8.75 per cent. and 5.75 per cent., respectively, and the upper earnings limit will be £95 a week.

Mr. Anthony Grant

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if she will instruct local offices of her Department to make available leaflet NI 42 on national insurance voluntary contributions without applicants having to take a numbered place and spend time in a waiting room.

Mr. Meacher

In many of our local offices callers may help themselves to copies of the most frequently requested leaflets from the leaflet racks. I have, however, been conscious for some time of the need to make it easier to obtain leaflets and in the next few weeks new arrangements will come into force which will enable the public, without having to wait at the office, to place an order for leaflets to be supplied through the post.