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Forum Home  →  Discussion  →  Benefits for older people  →  Thread

Pension Service staff have not heard of including children in claim

Andrew Dutton
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Welfare rights service - Derbyshire County Council

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Not asking a question, more airing a worry.

Claimant was on PC and CTC with her husband; 2 children on Special Guardianship Order.

Sadly, the husband died a few months ago, CTC stopped.

Claimant called Pension Credit and asked for the children to be added to her claim.

She was on the phone from 9 am to roughly 4pm being passed from one department to another to end up speaking to the first person she spoke to at 9am, none of them had a clue and were unable to help her.

One told her to claim UC, even when told she was on RP/PC.

Claimant was told it was ‘a grey area’ and none had heard of child elements of PC.

[clutches head, prepares complaint]

Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Information and advice resources - Age UK

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Maybe she should simply tell them to look at the guidance they produce?

From February 2019 this may also include an extra amount for children.

A detailed guide to Pension Credit for advisers and others

Andrew Dutton
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Welfare rights service - Derbyshire County Council

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Paul, the worst thing is that this isn’t the first instance of this. Absolute denial of their own rules and daft advice to boot!

Andrew Dutton
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Welfare rights service - Derbyshire County Council

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Update - presumably prompted by a complaint from us (‘presumably’, as they have not yet replied to it), the Pension Service has contacted the claimant to try to put matters right, but they say they are still ‘checking’ the effect on PC of the Special Guardianship Allowance. Don’t they know????

No sign as yet of any apology for the all-day call debacle.

 

 

Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Information and advice resources - Age UK

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There’s an exclusion of child elements in para.4 of Sch.1A of the SPC Regs where the child is looked after by the local authority but that doesn’t seem to be the case with a Special Guardianship Order and the only other exclusion is in reg.6(11) which covers where the claimants are receiving tax credits so that doesn’t affect them either as far as I can see.