Below is the text of Mr Major’s written Parliamentary Answer on Pensions on 5th December 1986.
Mr. Wigley Asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will introduce a system to enable pensioners who reach their 65th birthday several days before their first pension pay day to be able to receive a once-off Giro from his Department’s local office to pay to them the pension appropriate to that number of days for which they currently lose their pension.
Mr. Major Retirement pension is paid to people who have both attained a minimum age and retired from regular work. People approaching pension age are already advised in leaflet NP32, sent automatically before age 60-65 to all those for whom the Department holds a contribution record, that any gap between the date of retirement and the first pension pay day can be avoided by making the pay day the retirement date where this is possible for them. The pension is in law a weekly benefit, and at present no powers exist either to pay retirement pension for odd days between the date of retirement and the pension pay day, or, indeed, to recover it for days after a pensioner’s death included in a weekly payment already cashed.