Tens of thousands of retired women have to wait two and a half years for a pension discount.
This is because they were underpaid by the government.
The government agency DWP is hiring additional staff to receive £ 3 billion in “systematic” pension underpayments.
The department has said that despite the workforce tripling, it could take until 2023 for all cases to be dealt with. The mirror reports.
The error affects tens of thousands of married women whose husbands reached retirement age prior to 2008.
Those affected were unwittingly entitled to an “increased pension” that would have increased their payments by up to 60%.
Women received repayments in January, and the Household Responsibility Bureau estimated the repair could take until 2026.
Pension Minister Guy Opperman announced today that 360 people will be hired this year, the equivalent of 150 people already hired.
He said this would “speed up” repayments but added that he now “has the goal of completing the exercise by the end of 2023”.
An unknown number of women have died before they got what was owed them.
Former pension minister Sir Steve Webb, partner at the LCP pension advisors, told Der Spiegel: “It is welcome that the number of people working on the program is tripling.
“But it still means that some women who have been underpaid will have to wait at least two more years to get their proper pension.
“You shouldn’t have to wait.”
He added, “It’s a reminder of the scale of the problem – the fact that they will have to employ over 500 people over the next two to three years shows how many retired women and widows are affected.”
Previous estimates suggest that around 200,000 people could be owed payouts averaging £ 13,500, for a total of £ 3 billion.
But Mr Opperman told MPs it was too early to estimate how many people are receiving payouts or what they are worth.
Retirees have been advised not to contact the government and will be notified in writing if they are due a payout.
Mr Opperman said, “We are fully committed to having historical errors corrected as soon as possible to ensure that individuals receive the state pension that is legally due.”