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Qualitative evaluation of the Pension Credit payment study

Lady on street
Published: January 2012

Aim

In order to tackle the problem of pensioners not claiming their Pension Credit, and struggling financially, this pilot scheme automatically paid the credit into participants' accounts to see if this encouraged them to make a claim once the payments stopped. We were asked to carry out a qualitative evaluation of this scheme.

Findings

We uncovered significant barriers to making the claim including:

  • participants thinking they weren't entitled to the money;
  • negative experiences of claiming Pension Credit or other benefits in the past;
  • concerns about getting involved in a complicated claims process.

Method

The study involved depth interviews with a purposive sample of 40 individuals who had received payments of Pension Credit under the trial. The three main sampling criteria were age, current Pension Credit status, and estimated entitlement amount.