HL Deb 09 April 2001 vol 624 c151WA
Lord Higgins

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How many letters have been sent regarding entitlement to Widows Inherited SERPS to individuals addressed as "Miss". [HLI469]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Social Security (Baroness Hollis of Heigham)

We have sent around 8 million letters to pensioner households, including just under 400,000 to women listed on our computer records as using the title "Miss".

It would be inappropriate for the department to make assumptions about individuals' underlying entitlement to benefits based soley on their preferred use of a personal title. As all pensioners have an underlying entitlement to SERPS, we are disseminating information to all pensioner households, whether those individuals are married, have been married, have never married or may go on to marry at a future date.