§ Mr. Morgan
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what is his current estimate of the likely date of the hearing of the appeal against the social security commissioner's decision in relation to the incompatibility with European Community law of the different state retirement pension ages of men and women and its implication for access to invalidity benefit; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Burt
The appeal against the commissioner's decision—CS/27/91—has been listed by the Court of Appeal for hearing on either 26 or 27 July. This case concerns the rate of invalidity pension payable to claimants over state pension age the upper age limit for entitlement to invalidity allowance. The compatibility with European Community law of different state pension ages for men and women is not an issue in the commissioner's decision. EC law permits unequal state pension ages. Other forms of discrimination in the benefits system are also permissible if they are necessarily linked to that difference.