Elderly people who do not need benefits to help pay their TV licenses, bills or transport costs should return the money to the Government, the MP told the Sunday Telegraph last week. However, the decision to give up hand-outs is up to each individual, and the Conservative party has no plans to change the benefit system for elderly people.
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has said the suggestion ‘does not make sense’ and that benefits should be officially pulled for those who can afford it.
“When money is tight, you’ve got to have the right priorities in tough times. I think it’s right to ask very wealthy, maybe multi-millionaire, pensioners to make sacrifices, just as we’re asking families on lower incomes,” he said.
However, shadow communities secretary Hilary Benn does not agree. She believes everybody who has paid taxes to the UK government has a universal right to receive retirement benefits for their hard work.
Under the current system, pensioners receive a winter fuel allowance of between £100 and £300 tax-free, as well as a free TV licence worth £145.50 and free NHS prescriptions for over 60s. Those who are eligible also get free off-peak travel on buses anywhere in England.
Anyone can contact the Department for Work and Pensions if they wish to return their benefits.
Many wealthy elderly people choose to give their money to charity. What you do with yours is your own choice.
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