50-somethings should work until 70 for more generous state pension, says Lord Turner

Old hands

The state pension age should rise to 70 by 2030 according to Lord Adair Turner, the architect of the new state pension introduced in April.

The former head of the Pension Commission and former chairman of the Financial Services Authority has suggested that people who are currently in their mid-50s should work a further three years and only claim their state pension once they are 70. In return, they should be able to enjoy a more generous state pension.

Currently the state pension age is scheduled to hit 67 in 2028.

Moneywise columnist Jeff Prestridge says you shouldn’t rely on the new state pension to fund your retirement. Although it seems more straightforward, there will be winners and losers from the new pension system.

In a speech to clients of a private bank, Lord Turner said that there should also be means for manual workers and those on lower incomes (who are likely to have a lower life expectancy) to claim some form of state pension or means-tested benefit if they retire between 65 or 66 and 70.

Lord Turner will discuss his views with John Cridland who has been charged with reviewing the state pension by the Department of Work and Pensions. As the architect of the latest state pension reforms Turner’s comments are likely to be highly influential.

This review provides the opportunity to fundamentally redesign the state pension and an element of needs assessment could be introduced. Entitlement could be based on medical underwriting for example or payments could be regionalized to reflect variations in life expectancy in different parts of the country. Alternatively the state pension could become a safety net that only becomes payable once an individual has spent their own savings.

The report is expected to be published in 2017.

Tom McPhail, head of retirement policy at Hargreaves Lansdown says: “The state pension is a blunt instrument, which makes no allowance for people’s wealth or their life expectancy. However any deviation from the current state pension entitlement calculation based on a simple NI contribution history to one based on individual circumstances, could be both complicated and contentious.”


Mr McPhail adds: “Radical options, including medical underwriting, means testing, or using the state pension as a long stop for when someone has exhausted their private savings are all possible. The government will no doubt be mindful that it is very difficult to introduce any reform in this area of public policy without upsetting some voters.”

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I love these people who sit there in their cosy offices and tell us in our 50s that the pension age should increase to 70. My husband is an HGV driver who has to drive a huge oil tanker and then lug a really heavy pipe many yards into peoples gardens over brambles and thorns to fill their oil tanks. He is 57 and struggling now, how would you expect someone in a manual job to do that in their 70s. There are many manual workers out there who would be incapable of maintaining their current jobs eg, labourers, road workers, steeplejacks, dustmen, to name just a few. 
My husband wants to enjoy his retirement not die in his job thankyou

I had an office job and by the time I was 60 I was struggling. I retired shortly after that. I have a major balance issue which would have rendered me unfit for work and I also have had cancer. I am not even 70 yet so my chance of working until I was 70 is absolutely nil. Like most people of my generation I started work as soon as I left school so at 60 I had been working for 44 years. Nowaays there seems to be an assumption that people start working in their 20's and go go on far longer. I doubt it!

if we all work til we're 70, where do the jobs for the younsters come from?

if we all work til we're 70, where do the jobs for the younsters come from?

Agree with all the comments so far.  We must remember that every day is the first day of the rest of our lives!  Work to 70?  After 46 years in my job/self-employment about 50/50 split I'm shot away.
'A bad day on the golf course is better than a good day at work'!!

Bloody cheek, I along with most people who do not get a company pension or work in an office, will already have to work 50 years before I can claim my pension at the age of 66 in 2024. And will get no more money than someone who only does 35 years. But because I have worked all my life I will be entitled to no help if they make sure I cannot live on the pension I have paid for. I would also like to know how many of thes idiots can do a 10 hour day on their feet themselves. Also there are millions of people who apparently do not count because they work in retail on minimum pay, ooh sorry that is the "living wage" now is it not. So all those people already in their late 50's on minimum pay not get £7.20 per hour so their hours go down so the employer won't have to pay into the new pension scheme. This country has something against working people who pay for everything.

Thank you for all of your comments. We've featured a selection of them on the letters page of our July magazine.