Changes to the State Pension age are coming this week and it’s important for everyone to understand how this will affect them.
Your State Pension age is the earliest age you can start receiving your State Pension and may be different to the age you can get a workplace or personal pension.
It can be claimed when a person reaches their official State Pension age and depends on a person’s gender and date of birth but generally, people will be able to receive their State Pension from 65.
However, the UK Government is in the process of raising State Pension ages to 66 and there are plans to increase it to 68 in the coming years.
State Pensions are paid directly into a claimant’s bank account once they reach the qualifying State Pension age – the payments are an essential lifeline for many, often topping up retirement funds.
State Pension age is rising from May 6 but it will only affect people born between certain dates.
People born between July 6 1954 and August 5 1954 will see their State Pension age rise to 66.
The next increases will be in July and then September and from October 2020, everyone will reach State Pension age at 66.
With all these changes it can be hard for people to know exactly when they’ll qualify for it.
The tool provides information on when the user will:
How to use the Pension Age tool
Choose whether you are looking to calculate your State Pension age or bus pass age – you can do one, then check the other.
Once the State Pension age option is selected, input your date of birth.
Next, select whether you’re a man or woman.
The final screen reveals the exact date that you will reach State Pension age.
It’s also possible from this screen to get information on when you could become eligible for Pension Credit, get a pension forecast or receive other State Pension information.
Check your State Pension age here.
The actual amount a person will get from State Pension will depend on their National Insurance record.
State Pension rates increased in April by 3.9 per cent – the biggest boost since 2012 and so long as a person has a minimum of 35 years of National Insurance (NI) contributions, they could get £175.20 per week.
To receive any amount of State Pension, a person will need at least 10 years of NI contributions.
State Pension is usually paid every four weeks in arrears. The first payment will actually come within five weeks of reaching State Pension age – as long as the person has actually claimed it.
State Pension is not paid automatically, it will need to be claimed or deferred by the person involved. The UK Government will send a letter to people in advance of reaching qualifying age to advise them on how the system works and what the next steps are.
A person may not want to claim State Pension immediately, if they wish to defer it and keep on working, they could actually increase the amount they receive.
State Pension will increase by the equivalent of one per cent for every nine weeks deferred – as long as it is deferred for a nine week minimum.
This could equate to an additional six per cent for every 52 weeks – however, any extra payments you get could then be taxed.
-- to www.dailyrecord.co.uk