HC Deb 13 February 1995 vol 254 cc541-2W
Mr. Frank Field

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will list the number of successful

Estimated proportion of GB labour force eligible for standard rate SSP compared with proportion eligible for higher rate SSP 1987–88 to 1993–94
1987–88 1988–89 1989–90 1990–91 1991–92 1992–93 1993–94
Average weekly earnings cut off lower rate: standard rate £76.50 £79.50 £84 £125 £185 £190 £195
Proportion eligible for lower rate 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.2 0.4 0.4 0.3
Proportion eligible for higher rate 0.9 0.9 0.9 0.8 0.6 0.6 0.7


1. Information is not available for years prior to 1987.

2. Proportions have been rounded.

3. Proportions apply to GB employees as a whole eligible for SSP on earnings grounds only, not to SSP recipients.

4. To apply the proportions to actual SSP recipients would require the assumption of a constant distribution of sickness across earnings bands.

5. Most SSP recipients receive occupational sick pay in addition to SSP when they are sick. In many cases this brings the total payment received up to full pay.


Government Actuary's Department estimates.

Mr. Frank Field

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what plans he has to continue collecting data on the number of claims for statutory sick pay.

Mr. Hague

We have recently received a report of a joint DSS—employers' working group, which has considered changes and improvements to the administration of the statutory sick pay scheme, including the amount of mandatory records which employers are required to keep for SSP purposes. We are currently considering the group's report, but no changes will be made without consultation with both sides of industry.

Mr. Frank Field

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many people annually gain national insurance credits; and what estimate he has made of the cost of these credits if taxpayers contributed the sums which such individuals would have paid into the national insurance scheme from their own employer's contributions if they were on(a) two thirds and (b) average earnings.

Mr. Arbuthnot

In 1992–93, the most recent year for which information is available, some 4.5 million people were awarded an average of 47 national insurance contribution credits. If these individuals were receiving earnings and paid employees' national insurance contributions at current rates, those on two thirds of average earnings would have paid £932.48 and those on average earnings would have paid £1,505.88 in contributions.


(a) Calculations based on weekly male average earnings of £366—new earnings survey April 1994.

(b) Calculations assume that contributions were paid at the not contracted out rate of 2 per cent. + 10 per cent.

claims for statutory sick pay for each year since the scheme's inception; and if he will classify the data according to the rate of benefit paid.

Mr. Hague

The information is not available in the form requested. For the available information, I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave to him on 7 February,Official Report, columns 203–10. Further information is in the table.