Parliament: Social Security: pounds 4m for pension payout glitch

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The Independent Online
NEARLY 400,000 benefit claimants and pensioners will be paid compensation of at least pounds 10 each for chaos caused by the breakdown of a Contributions Agency computer, the Government announced.

The package was unveiled in the Lords after Tories and Liberal Democrats insisted the poor had been hit hardest. The Social Security minister Baroness Hollis of Heigham announced the policy during debate on the Social Security Contributions (Transfer of Functions) Bill.

Pensioners, widows and incapacity benefit claimants were underpaid when a computer system designed to calculating national insurance contributions crashed last summer.

The Contributions Agency had outraged pensioners' groups when it said it would compensate only those people owed pounds 100 or more after the breakdown of the National Insurance Recording System.