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State Pension age set to rise early for millions

A large chunk of the population is set to work for longer than expected as the government has announced that the State Pension age will go up to 68 earlier than expected.

At the moment the State Pension age is 65 or men. It's 64 for women, gradually increasing to 65 by 2018. Then it'll increase for both men and women to 66, 67 and then 68.

This final increase was meant to begin in 2044, but will now start seven years earlier in 2037. This affects anyone born between 6 April 1970 and 5 April 1979 as they will have to work one more year before they can claim the benefit.

And for anyone younger the state pension age could rise again, with reports earlier this year recommending workers under 30 may have to work until they are 70.

Who gets the State Pension?

State Pensions are paid by the government when you reach the State Pension age.

It’s not a freebie though. You’re actually funding it through your National Insurance (NI) contributions, which are deducted from your pay each month.

To be eligible for the full amount you must have been paying (or been credited with) at least 35 years of NI contributions.  Anything less and the amount you’ll receive will be reduced.  You’ll need at least 10 qualifying years on your NI record to get the State Pension.

Get a State Pension forecast

The best way to check the year you’ll currently be able to claim a State Pension is to get a statement. 

You can apply online and you’ll be able to see not just the years you’ve made full contributions, but how many years you’ve got to keep contributing.

What if you “contracted out” of your State Pension?

If at any point in your working life you were ‘contracted out’ of the Additional State Pension your new State Pension will be reduced.  This is because you either paid less National Insurance during that time or some of your NI contributions have been used to pay into a private pension instead.

What about other pensions?

The changes above are just for the State Pension here – you will hopefully also have a workplace or private pension too.

Unless you have a defined benefit pension you should be able to access your money at 55, though the longer you leave the money invested in your pension the more you’ll get when you access it.

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  • Faith Hurford / 21 July

    hello. Can you please confirm my pension age year. Date of Birth 14/11/1955 - woman.
    Is this likely to change again?