Updated July 2012
We know that customers are more likely to claim benefits, including Pension Credit, if they know someone like them who is getting it and how it has changed their life.
We have developed a number of case studies telling real life stories about people getting Pension Credit. They are short stories that you can use with your customers to reassure them that people just like them are getting extra money.
We have included a copy of all the case studies as an RTF file so that you can use them:
- in leaflets
- in training, or
- with the local press
You can start to produce your own case studies detailing your successes in helping pensioners claim Pension Credit. We’re produced a couple of documents to start you off.
Case study 1
Margery – single, age 80.
Margery says her Pension Credit helps her get out and about. She suffers from a range of health problems including osteoporosis and angina. This means she finds it difficult to get about, even on public transport.
Because of this she uses taxis to do supermarket shopping and go to meetings of groups she is a member of.
"It is brilliant and I put the money aside for my taxis, which I have to use to do my shopping and to get about to other places. They can cost about £10-12 a time and if I wasn’t able to use taxis I wouldn’t be able to get to the supermarket because I find it hard to walk long distances to the bus stop and can’t carry the bags.
"I couldn’t live without that extra money. I would just have to stay indoors and wouldn’t be able to go outside".
"I have told a lot of people about it and tried to get them to take it up. A lot of people view it as begging, but it is not. They are entitled to it".
Case study 2
Mavis – single, age 75.
Mavis is 75, severely disabled and lives alone. She has savings of £9,000 and gets £184.90 from:
- basic State Pension – £107.45
- Attendance Allowance – £77.45
When working out her Pension Credit, we can ignore her savings as they are less than £10,000. And we also don’t use her Attendance Allowance in working it out.
Mavis will get Pension Credit of £93.45 a week (this includes an extra £58.20 a week because she is severely disabled). This brings her total weekly income up to £278.35.
Mavis cannot get Savings Credit because her qualifying income (£107.45) is lower than the Savings Credit starting point of £111.80 for a single person.
Her Attendance Allowance does not count as qualifying income towards Savings Credit.
Case study 3
Leslie – single, age 85.
Leslie was living off less than £100 a week, and risked losing his home. But, after encouragement from his daughter, he found out about Pension Credit and realised he could be entitled to get a minimum of £142.70 a week plus extra help through the savings credit.
Since claiming Pension Credit, Leslie has now more than doubled his weekly income. This greatly improved his standard of living.
Leslie, who worked part time until he was 85, said: "I really struggled on £90 a week. I had a bit of a nest egg, but that was rapidly decreasing as I spent money on just living life like I normally did.
Now getting £230 a week, the delighted war veteran has double-glazed his home, replaced an old boiler and treated the damp in his walls.
"I was never on the poverty line, but it was getting to the point that I was going to have to sell my house. Then my daughter got me to get in touch about Pension Credit.
"They were fantastic and told me about these pension credits I was entitled to. I got a back payment of £3,000, which I used to double-glaze my home, and it more than doubled my weekly income."
Case study 4
Rita – single, age 72.
Widow Rita, 72, from Peterborough, was surprised when she started getting Pension Credit four years ago when her husband died.
"I was surprised that I qualified for Pension Credit as I had £6,000 savings. I did not know how the system worked and I had always assumed that Pension Credit was out of the question if you had any savings. It was a real godsend as my savings were for a rainy day."
Case study 5
Denis – single, age 60
Denis was born on 5 July 1951. He will reach the minimum Pension Credit qualifying age on 6 September 2012 at the age of 61 and two months. He is getting Income Support of £71.00 per week and has no other income.
When Denis reaches the minimum qualifying age for Pension Credit on 6 September 2012, he will automatically move on to Pension Credit. His total weekly income is currently £71.00 per week and will go up to £142.70 per week from September 2012, providing his circumstances remains the same, for example he does not start to get a works pension.
Denis will not get Savings Credit as he will only be 61, he may be able to get it when he reaches 65.
Case study 6
Jack – single, age 63
Jack is 63 and gave up full time work eight months ago. He lives alone in his own home and earns £85 a week from a part time job. He does not have any other income or any savings to draw on.
If Jack claims Pension Credit, we will ignore £5 of his earnings and only count the remaining £80 as income for Pension Credit purposes. Jack will get Guarantee Credit of £62.70, bringing his total income up to £142.70.
Jack cannot get Savings Credit as he is only 63.
Case study 7
Jackie – single, age 62.
Jackie is 62 and owns her own home. She gets State Pension of £107.45 a week and has no other income. Her savings are £5,000.
Jackie will get Guarantee Credit of £35.25 a week, bringing her total weekly income up to £142.70. We ignore her savings of £5,000 because they are below £10,000. Because Jackie is 62, she can only get Guarantee Credit. When she is 65, she may also get Savings Credit.
Because Jackie gets Guarantee Credit, she will get Council Tax Benefit and help with other things like free NHS prescription, free dental treatment.
Case study 8
Mary and Frank – couple, both 75.
Mary and Frank are both 75 and their income is £225.85 a week from:
- basic State Pension (Mary) – £107.45
- basic State Pension (Frank) – £64.40
- personal pension (Mary) – £50.00
- savings of £12,000 – £4.00
For any savings over £10,000, we assume there is £1 of income for every £500 of savings. In Mary and Frank’s case, this is assumed to be £4.
As Mary and Frank’s income is over £217.90, they cannot get Guarantee Credit, but they are entitled to £20.55 Savings Credit.
Mary and Frank will get Pension Credit of £20.55, bringing their weekly income to £246.40