The UK Government has recently announced that the proposed increase in the State Pension age to 68 will not be expedited. This news has been met with relief, particularly among those born in the late 1960s and early 1970s. As it currently stands, individuals born on or after 5 April 1977 will be the first group expected to work until the age of 68.
To help you better understand the situation, we’ve compiled key information on the following topics:
- Reasons behind the delay in increasing the State Pension age
- Future plans for the State Pension age
- How the changes may affect you
- Why the State Pension age is on the rise
- Current State Pension amounts
Why is the Delay in the State Pension Age Increase?
The Pensions Act of 2007, enacted by the last Labour Government, stipulated that the State Pension age would increase from 67 to 68 between 2044 and 2046. An independent review in 2017 suggested that this increase should be implemented earlier, between 2037 and 2039. However, the work and pensions secretary stated that any changes would only be made after another review.
In March 2023, a new review was conducted, revealing that the life expectancy for retiring Britons is nearly three years lower than previously projected in 2017. Given this and other findings, a decision on the State Pension age is now expected in 2026, following another review and the upcoming general election.
Why is the State Pension Age Increasing?
The State Pension age is gradually rising due to longer life expectancies and an ageing population. The number of State Pension claimants has more than doubled since 1962, leading to increased costs for the Government. Advances in healthcare and lifestyle have also contributed to longer life expectancies, further necessitating the age increase.
State Pension Age Timeline
1940s: Initial State Pension age was 65 for men and 60 for women.
2018: Equal State Pension age of 65 for both genders.
October 2020: Age increased to 66.
May 2026: Age will rise to 67, fully implemented by March 2028.
2044: Age set to increase to 68 for those born after April 1977.
How Much is the State Pension?
The amount you receive depends on your national insurance contributions (NICs). A minimum of ten qualifying years of NICs is required for any State Pension, and 35 full years for the full amount, currently £203.85 per week.
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