§ Mr. Wareing
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many married women have now claimed invalid care allowance following his decision to extend it to them; what steps he is taking to ensure that all married women entitled to this benefit will have entered their claim before the end of the year; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Major
A total of around 75,000 married and cohabiting women have claimed invalid care allowance, 60,000 of these claims have been made since my right hon. Friend's announcement on 23 June at column 21. We have sent individual letters to some 400,000 attendance allowance beneficiaries, asking them to pass on details of the extension to their carer. In addition there has been a national press campaign in newspapers and journals, including women's magazines. All the publicity has explained the ability to claim back to 22 December 1984 if the claim is received in the Department by 31 December 1986.
§ Mr. Foulkes
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is his estimate of the level of the earnings limit for the invalid care allowance at April 1987 had it risen in line with changes to the retail price index since it was last increased in November 1982.