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KEY HIGHLIGHTS

  • The national state pension age for women is set to increase in 2018 – the age will be 65 years starting next year
    • For women born between 6 April 1950, and 5 December 1953, the present age to receive state pension now is around 64 and is set to rise in November 2018
    • By November 2018, the age at which both men and women will become entitled for their state pension will be 65
  • The official retirement age will increase to 66 in 2020, 67 by 2028, and 68 by 2048
  • At present, the new State Pension is £159.55 per week.
    • The actual amount an individual will receive depends on their National Insurance (NI) record

OVERVIEW

According to the new guidelines, the state pension age is rising. Since many years, the age at which an individual could claim the state pension benefits had been 65 for men and 60 for women. Due to increasing life expectancy, the UK government has ended up paying some pensioners more in their years of retirement than the amount these individuals spent while paying their National Insurance (NI) as workers. According to the 2014 Pensions Act, the State Pension age needs to be reviewed during each Parliament. The review aims to consider few factors – changes in life expectancy, changing society dynamics etc. to ensure that State Pension remains sustainable for generations to come.

How to claim Carer's Allowance

Upcoming changes

A new State Pension scheme was initiated on 6 April 2016. The old State Pension system was composite, and produced inequity. For example, women tend to have lower State Pensions than men. The UK Government looked to address these issues and the aim was to bring in a simpler, and equal opportunity system where people have a clearer thought about what the state will provide, which would as a result make it easier to chart their retirement savings. The following points highlight the modifications to the new State Pension rule:

  • The new state pension age will have a solitary weekly amount (however, an individual may get in excess or a lesser amount than the full amount, depending on an individual circumstances)
  • An individual needs a minimum of 35 years National Insurance (NI) contributions or credits to be able to get the full amount
  • An individual will need a minimum contribution of 10 years to meet the criteria for the new State Pension
  • Individuals who have contributions between 10 and 34 years will receive a part of the pension
  • The new rule aims to focus on individual entitlements; no special rules for individuals who are married or in civil partnerships, or divorced

The new state pension is applicable for women born on or later than 6 April 1953 and a man born on or later than 6 April 1951

The old State Pension and assistance systems will keep on going for individuals who are already pensioners or who reached State Pension age prior to 6 April 2016. It's the date when an individual reaches the State Pension age that's significant - not when an individual starts to claim for pension

SPRING BUDGET 2017 AND STATE PENSION

In the spring budget 2017, Chancellor Phillip Hammond made no mention of pensions. However, several pension changes are being imposed from 6 April 2017, which are in-line to the announcement made in George Osborne's Budget in 2016. Individuals with a flat-rate state pension will see £3.90 increase in their weekly payments. From 6 April 2017, the state pension increased 2.5%, which means that individuals with a new flat-rate state pension will see an increase in their weekly payments from £155.65 to £159.55, whilst those with the old state pension will see an increase in their weekly payments from £119.30 to £122.30

HOW DNS ACCOUNTANTS CAN ASSIST

DNS Accountants are a leading accountancy and taxation firm in and around the UK. Our team provide comprehensive guidance to new and existing customers including small-business-owners and contractors / freelancers. Clients can click here, to check their state pension age online For any state pension age related query, users can book a free consultation with us or get in touch with us on our social media network – Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn

Few tips for our clients

  • Clients will not be able to receive their new state pension before state pension age (SPA)
    • By November 2018, state pension age will be – age 65 for men and women
    • By October 2020 state pension age will increases to age 66
  • Clients with need the assistance of learned accountants like DNS Accountant to be able to claim their new state pension; it will not be credited automatically
    • Claimant will be sent a letter four months prior to their state pension age maturity telling them how to claim
    • If clients do not hear anything from the department, we will help them check for the claim with the department or guide them through the online procedure
  • Information with regards to National Insurance (NI) contributions can be verified:
    • Individuals will need ten qualifying years to be eligible for any new state pension
    • Individuals must have paid 35 years of full rate NI contribution in order to get the full new state pension
    • All the relevant information can be checked with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC)
  • We assist clients with a new state pension statement
    • We help individuals aged 50 or above to request a new state pension statement
    • Assistance in correspondence with the UK Government
  • In case a client has a gap in their NI contributions record, we assist them in paying voluntary contributions in order to attain the bare minimum of ten qualifying years or to take full advantage of the new state pension
    • This should be done before state pension age
    • NI credits as a parent carer, for sickness and unemployment count towards the new state pension
  • In case of 'contracting out' where clients may have been contracted out of the earnings-related part or saved in a personal pension, and paid lower NI contributions
    • Under such circumstances, the clients will not be able to get the full new state pension, however, their private pension will be increased
  • We make the clients aware that they cannot inherit their spouse or civil partner's new state pension. However, in certain circumstances, they may be able to inherit an additional state pension if widowed
    • If an individual gets divorced, they can still keep the new state pension but may lose or gain an extra state pension
  • Individuals can enhance their new state pension if they defer payment by at least nine weeks.
    • State pension goes higher by 1% for every nine weeks deferred; 5.8% for a full year
  • For self-employed individuals, they will also be permitted to the new state pension based on Class 2 NI contribution records

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