Pensioners in line for £2,000 state pension boost

Pension relief

The average pensioner could see their state pension income increase by £42.35 a week if new plans are put into effect.

Over a year this would equal a rise of £2,202 – up from £5,077 to £7,280.

Work and Pensions secretary Iain Duncan-Smith is appealing for a simpler and increased state pension that would pay a flat weekly fee of £140 to everyone.

Later this year, the government plans to introduce auto–enrolment to workplace pension schemes for all workers. However, pension experts want to see a simpler state pension system first.

"This is a wake up call that we need a much simpler system pronto to allow people to plan their own retirement savings," says Laith Khalaf pensions analyst for Hargreaves Lansdown.

Dr Ros Altmann, Saga's director general, adds that: "Auto–enrolment cannot safely proceed without £140 a week state pension."

She is concerned that millions will lose means–tested benefits by paying into a new auto–enrolled scheme. In comparison, the new state pension would rule out means testing so that anyone paying into a workplace pension wouldn't lose out.

Looking at the numbers

The £140 state pension would be available to anyone who has a full national insurance record. It would combine the basic state pension and second state pension into one.

Those entitled to higher state pensions would still be able to receive more than the statutory £140.

The full basic state pension is currently £97.65 a week for a single person and £58.50 for a married or civil partner using their partner's national insurance record.

Altmann adds that if these moves had been introduced sooner, perhaps the pensions crisis could have been avoided.

She says: "At least for people reaching pension age in future, there would no longer be mass means-testing in the state pension system and their private pension savings would be theirs to keep, without being penalised by means-testing of pension credit."

The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) says it is working with the Treasury on these reforms but that there is still no timeframe for when they will be introduced.

A DWP spokesperson says: "For quite a while now, there's been call for a 'citizens pension' so to speak and we're committed to that. What we want is a nice and simple pension. We want to simplify the state pension system.

"The aim is a simple, decent state pension for future pensioners, which is easy to understand, efficient to deliver, affordable and provides a firm platform for workplace saving."

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Excellent news

But will those who have ALREADY retired get the £140, or will they continue to get only the £97.50? None of the press stories today (3 March 2011) mentions this.

I gather that those already on State Pensions will not be entitled to this £140 a week. I consider this to be a disgrace if this is the case. ALL Pensioners should get this new rate if it comes in. Why should people who (especially recent immigrants who have not earned many years of NI If any at all) get this new rate in preference to those who have paid IN for many many years and are stuck on very low pensions. My wife has just been told she will get £64 a week from April. I will not support any political Party who votes for a new Scheme which does not give parity to all. CH

Moneywise asked the DWP if the new flat £140 pension comes into place, will it only apply to new pensioners or those already receiving state pensions?

It wouldn't give a definite response, simply adding "we're still discussing potential reform".

Unfortunately that means we cannot clarify one way or another.

Looks like another government cock up heading our way

I am 80 and would like to see a decent pension paid, sooner rather than later,
especially since some newly-arrived immigrants seem able to claim
unbelievably large benefits without too much trouble.

The Coalition Government was supposed to have released a Green Paper on this very issue before the end of last year, 2010.

It is apparent that hthey are finding it extremely hard.

There is a problem with the current contributions based system because it means people have an "entitlement" that they have paid for.

To make any realistic, meaningful and sustainable reforms, they will need to break the connection between National Insurance contributions and the entitlement to a pension.

The idea already floated of paying everyone a flat rate of £140 per week which includes a component of the Pension Credit Guarantee which is currently means tested, is barmy.

Whatever the solution that they come up with will show an unfairness towards existing pensioners that this country has never seen before.

Another issue is index linking. As is widely known switching to the CPI (Consumer Price Index) will significantly cut the pension over the years ahead. On average by about 15%. This is a big threat to the viability of any state pension and second pension.

This is like the labour cowboys did to us 2 years ago
You had to have 44years qualifing years to get full pension. Now a male only has to get 30 years to receive full pension. ( 14 years less contributions than in NI than we have had to make).
Its the oldest people that are getting robbed again, while the MPs who cheat on thier expenses get full benefits and compensation.
Its about time we rebeled as with the banks
The dont pay interest on current accounts so why leave any cash above a nominal amount and just transfer in from your savings account over the internet daily
The banks would soon do something if everybody only left a mximum of £5 per day in a current account.
Its time to hit back at these greedy bankers

I WORK 29 YEARS BUT ONLY RECEIVE £358.40 a month my husband receive £501.04 A MONTH they say that I have not work long

The government had better sit up and take notice and give fairness to all, or they will have an extraordinary rebellion of pensioners marching on Downing street. Shame on them if they think they can get away with keeping anyone of us downtrodden. Forget the courage and the determination of the suffragettes at their peril. People have power - we want true democracy and fairness not a dictatorship gov. that it's in danger of turning into!

I'll believe this when I see it, what a rip off if new pensioners get it and not existing ones though this would not surprise me. I have little doubt that it will not start until about 2025 anyway although the present MPs would vote it through for themselves by midnight tonight.

Bound to be another govbernment 'scam' when the real facts emerge. Surely a more urgent need is to get less money going out on benefits etc. and get more revenue in? How? A good start would be to stop visas for fake students - here to work and remit money back home - and eject everybody who is here illegally. This would release jobs for natives who would pay tax and NI and would qualify for any new pension scheme. Those who don't want to work to lose benefits. Does the government not realise how people who have worked all their life and paid their dues feel when they see people on multiple benefits having a better living than they get. One benefit generates access to many more.....and you can always 'moonlight' to while away the time..........

If this £140 per week is only applied to new claimants, this is a disgrace. If I am correct the rules have also been changed to reduce the amount of contributing years from 39 to 20. This means that new claimants will receive far more and contribute far less.

As a current pensioner would be interested to know - are we entitled to the £140 per week also? I see no one seems to know - what a surprise!!! Having paid in for the alotted time surely we should not be treated any differently. PENSIONERS UNITE - WE BABY BOOMERS SHOULD BE WELL ABLE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE - THERE ARE ENOUGH OF US - AS EVERYONE KEEPS TELLING US!!!!Why should we be treated differently? suerely a case for the european court of human rights

I have made 36years NI contributions and because I am a woman and born in 1948 (unlike my husband who has also made 36years NI contributions but born in 1945 and is now in receipt of a full basic pension because he is only required to have 30years contrbutions) I on the otherhand cannot claim a full basic pension because I fall in those 5years from 1945 to 1950 and female so I am excluded. I now read that the present government is proposing a £2000.00 increase to basic pensions no doubt they will remove all the additional contributions such as SERPs, 2nd pension etc which increases my pension by £40 per week so once again I will miss out, I have paid all that additional contributions over 36 years for nothing - will they give me it all back or do I have to continue to support those who have paid nothing?

I have worked for 45 years the majority of which I paid reduced married woman national insurance contributions on the advise of a lady in the Scocial Security Dept because at that time I was part-time. I have also paid my taxes for 45 years (30 years in full time employment). I feel it is a disgrace if the new state pension of £140 will not apply to me. I would have liked to have been a stay at home mother but both my husband and I had to work to support our family. This government will not get the support of the people who have already retired if this is the case.

I retired in sept09 at the age of 71yrs. Having worked for the company for 23yrs. As they had got me to sign a letter opting out of serbs,I only had 19 qualified years so my pension amounts to £251.76 a month made up by my husbands
NI contributions. So I have no hope. Up to 2006 was on minimum pay how mean is that.

i to have worked for 45 years and on the advice that i need only pay half a stamp because i worked for nearly 10 years part time and was told it would not make any difference to my pension. i carried on only paying the half stamp not thinking anything about it until i received a letter from the DWP 5 years before i retired saying i would only be entitled to 1p a week if i did'nt change to a full stamp, i did change right away and also tried to buy the remaining years back that i had'nt paid in full, but was told that because i was paying the half stamp i would not be able to do that. yet anyone who has not worked or paid any stamps at all can buy there's it seems so unfair, especially since i have paid my dues in tax for all those years and kept in employment without having any handouts at all from any governments.

I thinks it is an outrage that new pensioners will get £155.00 per week, across the board, including people that have only recently arrived in this country. When people like myself and my husband have worked here all our lives will not receive this new rate.

I absolutely agree with the above comment. Why should the pensioners who have worked all their lives be penalised under the new system?
Working mothers received child benefits when they took time out to be with their children, so why should they receive the new increased pension too?
A two tier pension system is totally unfair. It really is time pensioners voiced their opinion instead of letting governments walk all over them!
Our existing state pension is an insult. Why do dossers always come out on top??

We will do what it takes to stop this unfair policy on our pensions!
People power resulted in a change of mind about selling off our wonderful forests, so let your voice be heard on this subject too!

Not of you have already retired. It stinks!

I worked all my life and paid the housewife stamp on advice given at the time to all housewives and was also told that it would not make any difference to my pension. We raised all our children without any handouts from the government, and never claimed anything. I think that it is obscene of the conservative party to pay one section of pensioners a 'decent' pension while the ones who have been retired are barely able to eat and heat. I have arthritis and suffer in winter as I cannot afford to heat all the rooms in our house and often go cold, and now we are told that one part of the retired community will be reasonable well off while the older pensioners will not benefit at all and will still be second class citizens. Surely this has to be a case for the European Court of Human Rights as this is blatant age discrimanation by the very government who's leader David Cameron stood up and pledged before the election that he would look after the elderly, well if this is his way of looking the elderly God help us. He probably hopes that we will die of hunger or cold and that will solve his problem. Live old horse and you will get grass. Can someone please take this to the european court of human rights, it is ageism at it's worst.

I have worked all my life in between having our three childres and I was told that if I paid the housewife stamp it would not affect my pension. I am one of the unfortunate ones who have had their pension cut in the government cleansing programme I now receive the princely sum of £63.05 a week pension and as I have a small private pension I do not qualify for any benefits, my husband and myself have never claimed anything from the state but our pension paltry as it is. I find it hard to believe that any government could discriminate against any section of the retired community but it seems as if that is exactly what they are planning if new pensioners are to get £140 per week per pensioner, while existing pensioners are to be given as little as £58 per week like someone who has raised children and are dependant on their husbands stamps or have to be means tested to get a bit more. David Cameron pledged that he would look after the elderly and that everyone would get a 'decent pension' well he is not keeping his word. I barely afford to heat and eat and fuel prices have soared to double their rate from last year.I have arthritis and suffer from cold but I can only heat one room and therefore suffer a lot of pain in winter if this an example of how we are to be looked after by the conservative government then God help us. Surely this is a case for the European court of human rights as this is age discrimination at its worst, maybe he hopes that we will all just die and solve his problem, he will not go cold or hungry and a full belly does not consider an empty one. Live old horse and yoy will get grass. Please can someone take this case to the European court of human rights as this is ageism by the government

The pension system should be simplified to give EVERY pensioner the same benefit, it must be illegal to do otherwise. People of the 1950s generation are losing out left right and centre and it has to stop. Treat every one as equal.

I feel very descrimated against as I have paid all my NI to this country [like at lot of people]. IT SHOULD BE FOR ALL PENSIONERS, who seem to be the lost tribe.

Any legal assistance out there with some answers?Can we actually take this goverment to court for the loss of our State Pension

I totally agree. I have paid full contributions for 45 years but will not be entitled to the £140 rate as I am already claiming my pension, the same applies to my husband who will have paid full contributions for 50 years. This is not fair as people who have not paid full contributions will get the new rate. Why can't we all get together and lobby our MP's to raise the issue in Parliament.

some people want to be careful of what they say

"Working mothers received child benefits when they took time out to be with their children, so why should they receive the new increased pension too?
A two tier pension system is totally unfair. It really is time pensioners voiced their opinion instead of letting governments walk all over them!
Our existing state pension is an insult. Why do dossers always come out on top??"

it sounds like you are saying being a housewife make you a dosser ?

i would say any woman who desires to stay at home to bring children up deserves as much as if they had been in full time work as it is a full time job
as my wife will agree

So when they say we will get £140 aweek what will a couple get i claim pension credit for my partner who is 51 years old we have both worked all our lives since we were 15 and i agree with the others that has wrote in about imagrants who hasent put a penny in the pot and are getting a lot more than us british.

I have never believed a word a Tory said even though I have worked all my married life of 54 years brought up 2 children,we have never claimed dole or benefits did my last shift at the hospital November 2010 at the age af 73 years. I probably will not get the £140 rise if and when it comes out. I trust the Tory Goverment as far as I can throw them. He cannot even give a straight answer they are selling us to the highest bidder.

With the number of pensioners in the country, its a pity that a Pensioners Political Party (PPP) isnt started, to campagain for pensioners rights. At the next election all the existing parties would be swept into oblivion. Current pensioners have paid into the system for 40/50 years, but we are treated like second class citizens ,, while the work shy and new immigrats get EVERTHING for no contributions.