HC Deb 24 April 2002 vol 384 cc344-5W
Chris Grayling

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if old-age pensions are paid by bank transfer in advance or in arrears; and what estimate he has made of the extra cost that would be incurred in beginning pensionable benefits on the relevant birthday rather than on the subsequent payday. [50676]

Mr. McCartney

People who opt to have their retirement pension paid into their bank account are normally paid four weeks in arrears. From 2003, payment directly into bank accounts will become the normal method of paying benefits and pensions. We will be enhancing our computer systems to make payments of retirement pension available in advance and on a weekly basis.

If payment were made for part weeks at the start of a claim only, and there was no recovery of overpaid benefit at the end of a claim, we estimate that this would incur a cost of up to £20 million per annum.