Do you know when you’ll reach your state pension age? When planning for retirement it’s crucial to know your entitlements.
The level of the state pension has become more straightforward in some ways since the introduction of a flat-rate pension in 2016. But figuring out when and exactly what you will receive has become more complicated.
Women used to collect their state pension at the age of 60, and men received theirs from age 65, but women’s state pension age (SPA) has been rising over the last eight years. By the end of this year women’s SPA will be the same as for men.
A second phase will then begin which will push up the SPA from 65 to 66 over a period of sixteen months. Seven years later, the SPA will be raised again to 67.
Who is affected by these changes?
The SPA changes are complicated, but some key dates could affect you:
- If you were born between 6 October 1954 and 5 April 1960, you will reach your SPA at 66.
- But if you were born after 6 April 1961, you will reach your SPA at 67.
There are two periods when the SPA will rise each month according to your date of birth.
If you were born between 6 December 1953 and 5 October 1954, your exact SPA between 65 and 66 will increase in monthly intervals depending on your birthday: e.g. someone born on 30 September 1954 will have an SPA of 65 years 11 months.
If you were born between 6 April 1960 and 5 March 1961, the SPA will also depend on the month of your birth. So, someone born on 28 February 1961 will have an SPA of 66 years 11 months
This will not be the last increase to the SPA. With people living longer and the baby-boomer generation heading into retirement, the government may be forced to control spiralling pension costs by revisiting this area.
Many women who have seen their state pension age rise in recent years have complained they were not given enough warning of these changes.
We can help you understand how these changes will affect you and your retirement planning. For example, we could advise how to bridge any gap between the time when you expected to get your state pension and when it will actually start to be paid.