Search Legislation

Welfare Reform and Pensions Act 1999

Section 62: Incapacity Benefit: restriction to recent contributors

Previously, in order to qualify for Incapacity Benefit (IB), people had to satisfy the two National Insurance contribution conditions set out in paragraph 2 of Schedule 3 to the Contributions and Benefits Act:

  • First, they must have paid either Class 1 (employed) or Class 2 (self-employed) National Insurance contributions, or a combination of both, on earnings equal to at least 25 times the Lower Earnings Limit (currently £66.00 a week) in any one tax year prior to the benefit claim; and

  • Second, they must have paid, or been credited with, either Class 1 or Class 2 National Insurance contributions, or a combination of both, equal to at least 50 times the Lower Earnings Limit in each of the two tax years prior to the benefit year in which they claim IB. A benefit year begins on the first Sunday in January; the tax year starts on 6 April.

Under the Social Security (Credits) Regulations 1975, people can be given credits in a number of circumstances, to help maintain their contribution record. The main effect of credits is to help people qualify for retirement pensions, but they can also count for other benefits. Credits which can count for the purpose of the second contribution condition in IB include credits for weeks of unemployment, incapacity or training, and credits for weeks receiving Invalid Care Allowance or Disabled Person’s Tax Credit.

Back to top


Print Options


Explanatory Notes

Text created by the government department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Public Acts except Appropriation, Consolidated Fund, Finance and Consolidation Acts.


More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources