Let women take their pension early, say MPs


Women who are suffering as a result of rapid increases to their state pension age, should be able to access the state pension early, according to a group of MPs.

The recommendation from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) Select Committee would allow women born in the 1950s, who have seen their state pension age rise from 60 to 66 by 2020, to start claiming their pension early in return for a lower weekly payment.

According to the report, a woman born on 6 January 1955 who is scheduled to reach state pension age on 6 January 2021 aged-66 and get a weekly payment of £155.65, would see her weekly income fall to £149.58 (a loss of £6.07 a week) in the 2016/17 tax year if she retired nine months earlier.

See our Guide to the new state pension.

Tom McPhail, head of retirement policy at Hargreaves Lansdown says this would be a cost neutral move for the government which might go some way in appeasing women who feel that changes to the state pension age were not adequately communicated.

“Politically this could be quite attractive as it would show the government is listening and is sympathetic, without it actually having to cost any money,” he says.

The proposal follows the announcement, earlier this month, that John Cridland OBE, is to conduct a fresh review of the state pension age, raising the threat of further increases to the state pension age.

As such, Steve Cameron, pensions director at Aegon says that this level of flexibility should be offered to all retirees irrespective of gender.

“Last year the Chancellor revolutionised retirement choices by offering all those with a private ‘defined contribution’ pension vastly increased flexibility around when and how much they could take from their pension. The next logical step would be to offer new flexible choices within the new state pension.”

He adds: “ While average life expectancy is increasing, ‘healthy’ life expectancy is much more varied, and working to more advanced ages may not be feasible for all based on health or the challenges of a particular job. This means further increases in state pension age have to be accompanied by flexibility for individuals to decide to take a reduced amount from an earlier age.”

Your Comments

This is just another example of women wanting equality but when it means they actually lose something, they start whimpering.
The govt need to be careful that any changes are on a gender equal basis. 

The Government has increased State Pension but has slashed Additional State Pension for those of us who were entitled to it.  I worked 42 years continuously to accumulate that entitlement. The clue was in the word - ADDITIONAL.  Nothing wrong with the old ethos - the more you pay in, the more you can draw out.

The basic problem here is that we are being told we have to work over 50 years, both men and women, to get the same pension as those who only PAY IN for 35 years. It also has been ignored that most men did not have to pay national insurance after the age of 60 when women could retire at 60. Also if we all have to work until we are 66, 67, 68 or even 70 where are all the jobs coming from for the next generation. Those of us in our late 50's and early 60 now who have worked full time since we were 16 should not have to pay the price for the ,any women from the previous generation who never paid a penny in and pay for unemployability of the next generation.