First and foremost, credits are credited contributions by the government and when entitled to, fill the gaps for when there are missing contributions in our contribution history sheet. Do not forget that the pension rate depends on the amount of contributions an employee contributes and credited contributions for which s/he is entitled to. Credited contributions are given for a defined period for matters defined in the Social Security Act for example child rearing credits, invalidity credits, study credits.
Credits for personnel working at
- Armed Forces of Malta (AFM),
- The Malta Police Force (COP),
- Correctional Services Division (CCF), and at
- Civil Protection Department (CPD)
are only due when a minimum of 25 years of service in the grade would have been carried out and therefore eligible for a full Service Pension from the Treasury Department.
Personnel without full service are not entitled to a service pension, and hence, not entitled to any social security service credits.
On the other hand, for those who are in receipt of a treasury pension and resume employment after termination of work with AFM, COP, CCF, CPD, period of employment need to be covered by contributions paid by the employee himself / herself other than covered by credits. Credits would only be assigned to fill in the gaps for when a person in receipt of a treasury pension would have not been engaged in the employment.
Widows credits are granted to widows who would have been in receipt of widows pension and who attained pension age and are entitled to a retirement pension in their own name. Widows are entitled to credits from date of marriage to pension age.
Conversion cases are retirement pension claims of pensioners who are in receipt of invalidity pension at retirement age. In conversion cases, that is, when assessment of the retirement pension takes place, invalidity credits are included in the contribution average. Credits cover the period for when a person would have terminated work in view of incapacity for part/time or full/time work, and granted invalidity pension, as decided by the appointed Medical Board.
This part explains the rights for credits enjoyed by persons entitled to a Carers’ Pension to persons who are entitled to Social Assistance for Carers and also to those who fail to satisfy the criteria of a means test for the fulfilment of a Carers’ Pension as established in Part IV of the Second Schedule but fulfil the criteria of Article 106 (a) which refers to the medical assessment.
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The latest amendment grants 104 weeks in credited contributions per child to parents born between 01 January 1952 and 31 December 1961 who take a career break to care for their child, eligible to a maximum of 6 yrs (312 credits) for first three children (one child * 104 (2 years of credits) * three children). For fourth child onward, an additional 1 year of child credits are awarded, provided that the parent would have returned to employment for a minimum of 1 year. For fourth child on wards, pro-rata credits will be assigned if less than 52 contributions are paid after birth of fourth child, prior retirement age.
For parents born after 1/1/1962, the maximum of credits granted is 12 years for first three children, that is four years per child (208 credits per child). From the fourth child onwards, an additional 2 years of child credits are assigned provided that the parent would have returned to employment for a minimum of 2 years, or pro-rata credits depending on the number of contributions paid when resumed employment after birth of fourth child. Child credits are not valid for invalidity pension purposes but solely upon the assessment of a retirement pension claim.
Rights for credits include:
- Seeking employment through ETC i.e. registering under Part One of the Register kept in accordance with the provisions of the Employment and Training Services Act. The latter will receive Unemployment Benefit and therefore gain benefit credits,
- Performing volunteer work in Malta or abroad (and recognized as such). The latter will be granted a maximum of 260 credited contributions provided that they would have returned to insurable employment for a period of not less than five years.
- Receiving Sickness Benefit, or Injury Benefit, or Unemployment Benefit, or Special Unemployment Benefit. Credits are granted to any insured person (paying contributions) for any calendar week for each day of which s/he is entitled to mentioned benefits.