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Women’s state pension age: Work and Pensions Committee calls on Government to bring forward proposals for compensation scheme

15 May 2024

The Work and Pensions Committee has today called on the Government to bring proposals forward before the summer recess to provide compensation for women born in the 1950s affected by DWP’s failure to communicate increases in the State Pension age from 1995 onwards.

In a report published in March, the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) asked Parliament to identify how to provide an appropriate remedy for those who have suffered injustice due to maladministration on the part of DWP.

In a letter to Work and Pensions Secretary of State Mel Stride MP, following last week’s Committee session with the PHSO and campaigners from Women Against State Pension Inequality (WASPI), the Committee focused on what a remedy might look like. It said the evidence it received indicated support for payments to be based on the extent of change to an individual’s State Pension age and the notice of change they received.

The letter adds that there should be some flexibility for individuals to make the case for a higher level of compensation based on experiencing direct financial loss.

Chair comment

Rt Hon Sir Stephen Timms MP, Chair of the Work and Pensions Committee, said:

“The debate over the impact of the DWP’s failure to communicate increases in the women’s State Pension age has dragged on for too long and it is time the Government took action to resolve the issue. There is no perfect solution, but there would seem to be broad support for a rules-based system of compensation with a degree of flexibility for cases where women have experienced direct financial loss. While the Ombudsman has put the matter in the hands of Parliament, a remedy can only happen with the support of the Government and we hope Ministers will move quickly to bring forward its proposal before the summer.”

The Committee will question Mr Stride along with the DWP Permanent Secretary on 22 May.

Further information

Image: House of Commons