§ Mr. David Marshall
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if, pursuant to the answer of 29 October, he will define the term "pay day" in relation to the timing of the payment of retirement pension; and what estimate he has made of the maximum amount which could be lost between a pensioners' qualifying birth date and the first relevant pay day.
§ Mr. Lyell
The pay day is the day for each individual pensioner from which weekly sums of retirement pension become payable. The prescribed pay day for those retiring at present is Monday. Since pension is payable weekly in advance, the first pension payment is at most six days after the qualifying birthday and the date of retirement. The maximum difference is, therefore, six-sevenths of the weekly pension rate. However, pension is a weekly benefit and is never calculated on a daily basis.
The Department's leaflet NP 32, a copy of which is in the Library and which is sent automatically to all pensioners some three months before they reach pensionable age, advises pensioners that any delay between the date of retirement and the first pension pay day can be avoided by choosing the pension pay day as the date of retirement.