TWO Labour MPs are urging the government to reform Pension Credit to make it easier for claimants to get the money they are entitled to

Burnley's Julie Cooper and Hyndburn's Graham Jones are backing a campaign by charity Independent Age.

It recently published a report which estimated that pensioners across East Lancashire could have missed out on £35million in the means-tested benefit in 2016/2017.

Independent Age's research suggests that 40 per cent of cash-strapped older people don’t know about Pension Credit or how to claim it.

Mrs Cooper said “It is important that people who have worked their entire lives can enjoy their retirement.

"Pension Credit is an important entitlement that eases the financial worries that too often come with retirement.”

“My office has been asked to help many constituents in Burnley and Padiham who struggle with the complexity of the system.

"The government needs to do more to provide clarity on who can claim and make it easier for them to get the money to which they are entitled.”

Mr Jones said “It is unacceptable that over £5.5million of pension credit is not reaching constituents each year.

"The government should ensure pensioners are in receipt of the help they need, not living in poverty unaware.”

The charity's research estimates that hard-up pensioners in Blackburn are missing out on £9.54million; those in Pendle are losing £6.28m; and for those in Rossendale and Darwen’s the figure is £4.38m.

The figure for Burnley is £5.71m; Hyndburn - £5.66m; and Ribble Valley £3.07m.

A spokesperson for the Department for Work and Pensions said: “We want everyone to claim what they are entitled to.”