Thursday, 5 March 2020
Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection
The person concerned applied for State pension (contributory) on 5 November 2012 and was awarded a pension at 90% of the maximum rate with effect from their 66th birthday.
According to the person's record of social insurance contributions held by my Department at time of award, they had 1,469 qualifying paid and credited contributions from their date of entry into insurable employment in June 1965 up to end-December 2012, the end of the tax year preceding their 66th birthday. This gives a yearly average of 31 which falls within the rate band of 30-39 and equates to 90% of the maximum rate of State pension (contributory) entitlement.
The person concerned contacted my Department to advise that contributions for the tax years 2012 and 2013 had not been included in the calculation of their pension entitlement. Contributions for the 2012 tax year were included in the yearly average calculation and increased the person's yearly average to 32. However, since this remains within the 30-39 rate band there is no increase in pension rate under this yearly average calculation method.
The person's pension entitlement was subsequently reviewed under a new total contributions approach to pension calculation which includes provision for homecaring periods and contributions for the 2013 year up to their 66th birthday. The person concerned indicated that they had been a primary carer and was consequently awarded 436 homecaring periods. Based on their contribution record of 1,526 qualifying paid and credited contributions and 436 homecaring periods, their pension entitlement increased to 94.33% of the maximum rate of pension, backdated to 30 March 2018 in line with social welfare legislation.
I hope this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.