31-Dec-19 – This is Money: DWP does not hold records of people who do not claim state pension
Retirees who forget to claim their state pension risk missing out on millions of pounds. Many people do not realise that they will not receive their state pension automatically.
31-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension age? You may be able to get extra £4,500 – who can claim and how in full
30-Dec-19 – Daily Express: Retirement and me: Woman with less than full state pension on how she avoids using savings
“The money obviously, is very handy, because once I do retire, I shall be on almost only on a state pension.”
– Sue Cutler
28-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension age but haven’t claimed payment yet? You may be able to get an extra £500
The state pension increases by the equivalent of one percent for every nine weeks it is deferred. This works out just under 5.8 percent for every 52 weeks.
“It sickens me to think of the sacrifices some will be enduring to make ends meet, unaware that those hardships are completely unnecessary.”
– Steve Wilkie, Managing Director, Responsible Life – Equity release company who helped recover this money
26-Dec-19 – Personnel Today: Over-65s to account for more than half of UK employment growth
…the over-65s will make up 52% of all the UK’s employment growth in the next 10 years, 57% in the next 20 years and perhaps 62% by 2060.
– Rest Less UK
25-Dec-19 – Somerset Live: Pensioners urged to check if they are owed a payout after DWP hands man £132,800
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has admitted it cannot estimate how many people are missing out on payments after a man discovered he was owed a staggering sum.
23-Dec-19 – Daily Express: Pension: Minister on ‘best way to get the retirement you want’ – can you afford to retire?
“The best way to get the retirement you want is to get to know your pension.”
– Guy Opperman, Minister for Pensions and Financial Inclusion
….Mr. Opperman – Please give us the same State Pension that our peers receive in the UK – that is all we are asking for….
23-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension age change: 1950s women sleep in their cars with no savings, says campaigner
“Most of us women are in that position or worse, we don’t have any savings left…there are women using food banks…..we know of a woman who sleeps in her car…..we’ve got grannies sofa-surfing because they have run out of money and the Government are not doing anything about it.”
21-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension age? You could be missing out on thousands – one man landed £133k windfall
….the DWP has no idea regarding the number of Pensioners who could be receiving a State Pension, but have never claimed….
21-Dec-19 – National Seniors (Australia): Frozen British expat pensioners urged to ‘keep on fighting’
“I think the [British] Government knows it’s an anomaly and the reason they don’t do anything about it is because the people involved are old and will die. Therefore, they feel, very cynically, that they don’t need to do anything about it. I think we have to keep fighting. I don’t think it’s an easy one to win but I hope that, eventually, we can just shame the [British] Government into rectifying this”
– Miriam Margolyes, star of the Harry Potter films
20-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension age: ‘Government must right the wrongs’ says WASPI after Queen’s Speech 2019
“WASPI is disappointed but sadly not surprised that this Government has ignored the injustices faced by 1950s-born women. Whilst the Pensions Schemes Bill is a welcome move in improving the protection of people’s pensions, the Government has once again failed to protect 3.8 million 1950s-born women…..greater protection is necessary, but the Government must right the wrongs of its past policies if it is to regain the trust of the public”
….we shouldn’t forget that some of the 520,000 Frozen Pensioners are also WASPI’s, and we would agree that the Government must right the wrongs of the current frozen pensions policy….
20-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension: £10 Christmas Bonus ‘could have bought a CAR’ in past – charity urges boost
“We urge the Government to not just keep the Christmas Bonus but to increase it, at least in line with the rate of inflation, and to remember the reasons why it was established in the first place.”
– Sara Willcocks, Head of Communications at Turn2us
…..another benefit not available to Frozen Pensioners
18-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension change may be linked to retirement age rise: Warning issued amid latest data
“To me, if you work for the DWP, I would expect staff would have some sort of prior knowledge. I didn’t. It wasn’t just me – another two ladies I worked with found out with the letters [in 2011]……Many of these women I interviewed were distraught and suffering with anxiety and depression, their lives thrown into chaos, having not been adequately notified of the changes and finding themselves jobless with no income.”
– Patricia Dabell, 63, worked as a benefits adviser for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) for 42 years.
…..for some, if they are living in the UK, they can claim other Benefits….if you are living abroad, no such luck….
16-Dec-19 – The BMJ Opinion: Martin McKee: The people have spoken—where next for Brexit?
Another consideration will be that EU member states are likely to reciprocate, with consequences for the large numbers of British pensioners who have retired to the sun, who may feel they have no option but to return, placing additional pressure on a struggling social care system.
13-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension news: Millions of pensioners secure income increases amid Boris election win
13-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension age? Martin Lewis explains who could save £140 in 2020: Key deadline to note
“This is the Warm Home Discount, that’s been around a long time but it’s a pertinent time for talking about it……[in addition] one million pensioners don’t claim Pension Credit….”
– Martin Lewis, founder of Money Saving Expert
…..two more benefits that Frozen Pensioners do not get……
13-Dec-19 – Startsat60: Everything you need to know about claiming the UK state pension in Australia
….if you are thinking of emigrating to Australia, contact British Pensions in Australia (BPIA) at www.bpia.org
13-Dec-19 – The Independent: How to leave the United Kingdom
UK residents are obliged to tell the relevant government offices dealing with your benefits, pension and taxes before moving abroad. If you receive a pension, you must contact the International Pension Centre. You can still claim a state pension while based abroad “if you’ve paid enough UK national insurance contributions to qualify”.
13-Dec-19 – The Local (France): What the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement means for British citizens in France
These are true for any EU country, and not just France:
If you are legally resident in an EU country then you will have the right to stay, albeit you will have to apply to authorities in order to secure this status.
The right to stay is not only guaranteed for those already living in the EU on Brexit day, but also those who come to the EU before the end of the transition period, which currently is 31st December 2020.
Aggregation of social security contributions is agreed;
Britons in the EU will enjoy the continued right to reciprocal healthcare.
Pensions will be uprated – meaning your UK state pension will be increased annually as it has been for those living in the UK or in the EU up to now and this continues for your lifetime.
Disability benefits will also be “exported” as they are now.
Residency permits will still have to be applied for if EU countries, as they are expected to do, introduce a “constitutive system”.
12-Dec-19 – Daily Express: Can you increase your state pension? How to defer – when could you get the extra amount?
The state pension increases by the equivalent of one percent for every nine weeks it is deferred – working out as just shy of 5.8 percent for every 52 weeks.
12-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension: Can you inherit your spouse’s state pension? How much can be inherited?
It may be that they can increase their basic state pension by using the deceased’s qualifying years if they do not already get the full amount.
12-Dec-19 – The Connexion (France): ‘No time for overall deal if transition is 11 months’
11-Dec-19 – Daily Express: State pension fury: How Britain’s forgotten war widows shunned by party leaders
“Unjust pay cut made us all struggle”
– Margaret Bond, wife of SAS hero killed in action in 1975
10-Dec-19 – Aberdeen Evening Express: Row rages on over pension concerns
“Country-wide and in Aberdeen we have women who are sofa surfing, who have sold their homes, who are relying on their 80-year-old parents or their children just to get through life. We all thought this would be resolved after a year or so but we’re still going through this.”
– Linda Carmichael, of the Aberdeen Waspi group
10-Dec-19 – Fenland Citizen: Blame Tony Blair for the strain on NHS, not us pensioners
“We are the people who helped, with our hard work, that built the NHS in 1948 – with the belief we would be taken care of when we reached a certain age.”
– Mrs Lily Burke – Letters to the editor
….The over half a million frozen pensioners also thought that they would be taken care of when they reached a certain age, but sadly not….
10-Dec-19 – Euronews: Britons living in EU countries ‘denied democracy’ in UK ‘Brexit election’
Hundreds of thousands of people – more than 60% of all British residents in EU countries – are thought to be deprived of a vote because of the 15-year rule. The UK’s failure to change the law has sparked an outcry.…a Private Member’s Bill introduced early in 2019 was effectively blocked by a Eurosceptic Conservative MP who “talked it out” under an arcane procedure known as filibustering.
7-Dec-19 – The Express: State pension is rising in 2020 but some retirees won’t benefit from increase – will you?
7-Dec-19 – The Guardian: ‘Frozen’ pensioners need Labour largesse more than Waspi women
“There seems to be no logic – it’s discriminatory and prejudice. The people most affected by this are rarely qualified to fight the injustice, and of my parents’ generation, too many just ‘put up with it’ and don’t want to ‘rock the boat’, so accept the status quo.”
– Daughter of Windrush Generation
4-Dec-19 – The Express: Britain’s Great Pension Crisis: State pensioners reveal struggle to pay for vital heating
“..more than 2.2 million British pensioners (11 percent of over 65s) think they are in the worst financial position that they have ever been in, and seven percent of over 65s said a fear of bills has led them to avoid opening mail or checking their statements.”
…..imagine how over 95,000 Frozen Pensioners (pardon the pun) who are receiving less than £20 per week fear opening their heating bills….
3-Dec-19 – Shetland News: Are our pensions under threat?
“As a percentage of average earnings, the state pensions in Iceland, Denmark and the Netherlands are 76 per cent, 80 per cent and 101 per cent respectively: in the UK the state pension is 29 per cent of average earnings.”
– Letter from reader Karrol Scott, Lerwick
2-Dec-19 – Thai Vision-The Nation: Frozen British Pensions
….You can register and join the conversation…
2-Dec-19 – The Guardian: ‘We’ve been robbed’: how women hit by rise in pension age intend to vote
2-Dec-19 – Forbes: The UK Election, Waspi, And Why Social Security Reform Is So Dang Hard
29-Nov-19 – ReadBells: A fairer pension system for expats – does it exist?
“There is absolutely no reason why some expats do not receive the benefits. Many pensioners have to leave their family and stay alone just to receive the benefits of their pension funds.”
..this article is open for comments….
29-Nov-19 – Yahoo (Motley Fool): Most people don’t get the full State Pension. Here’s how you can retire wealthy anyway
Last year, OECD data suggested it was the worst in the developed world….of the 1.1m people who receive the new State Pension, only 44% receive the full amount of £168.60 a week, the remainder get less….
….According to DWP data (Feb ’19) this is what Frozen Pensioners receive:
Number of Average Weekly
Frozen Pensioners Amount Received
95,636 < £20.00
180,436 £20.00 – £39.99
101,810 £40.00 – £59.99
53,386 £60.00 – £79.99
28,765 £80.00 – £99.99
45,560 £100.00 – £149.99
14,183 > £150.00
Total number of Frozen Pensioners: 519,776
……a maximum 0f 3% receive the full new State Pension – makes pretty grim reading, doesn’t it?
29-Nov-19 – The Express: State pension news: Loophole exposes major flaw in Corbyn’s WASPI pledge
29-Nov-19 – The Express: State pension fury: Andrew Neil exposes Labour tax plan to cripple low-income pensioners
28-Nov-19 – The Guardian: Labour’s policies will benefit millions, but now it needs to sell them better
27-Nov-19 – Daily Express: Election 2019 LIVE: Corbyn’s NIGHTMARE continues as poll sees Labour reduced to 200 SEATS
27-Nov-19 – Daily Express: General Election rules: Can EU citizens vote in the December election?
To be eligible to go to the polls you must:
be registered to vote
be 18 or over on the day of the election (‘polling day’)
be a British, Irish or qualifying Commonwealth citizen
be resident at an address in the UK (or a British citizen living abroad who has been registered to vote in the UK in the last 15 years)
not be legally excluded from voting
26-Nov-19 – Daily Express: State pension age changes: Will WASPI women get compensation? Party vow to support review
“A Liberal Democrat government will ensure that women born in the 1950s are properly compensated for the failure of government to properly notify them of changes to the state pension age. Successive Governments have failed to adequately communicate to women the changes made to State Pension Age since 1995. There is an ongoing investigation by the Parliamentary Ombudsman into this.”
– Tim Farron, Liberal Democrat DWP Spokesperson
The Liberal Democrats pledged to support an independent review in order to determine “what compensation should be provided.”
26-Nov-19 – Left Foot Forward: The Tory plan to raise the pension age will hit the poorest hardest
At 29% of average earnings, the UK state pension is the lowest amongst economically developed countries.
Not everyone is able to supplement it with other income and one in six pensioners is living in poverty.
With government enforced austerity, the UK has become a low-wage economy and the state pension is likely to be a major source of income for many future retirees.
On the state pension, Labour Party’s manifesto says: “We will maintain the ‘triple lock’ and guarantee the Winter Fuel Payment, free TV licences and free bus passes as universal benefits”.
The same is promised by the Conservative manifesto
The state pension is primarily funded by National Insurance Contributions. These are held in the National Insurance Fund (NIF) which at 31 March 2019 had a surplus of nearly £30bn. This would have been much larger if previous governments had not abdicated their responsibilities.
26-Nov-19 – Hargreaves Lansdown: Labour’s proposals – pensions and personal tax
25-Nov-19 – Interactive Investor: Gender pension gap becomes an election issue
25-Nov-19 – Daily Express: State pension fury: Scottish WASPI woman to vote Tory as she rubbishes Labour pledge
The WASPI campaigner said she doesn’t believe labour’s pledge:
“I don’t think anybody takes them seriously anymore.”
25-Nov-19 – Emigrate.co.uk: Recent research shows Australia as favourite for Brit expat pensioners
According to recent research, almost a quarter of a million British expatriate retirees in Australia are claiming their UK state pensions. The numbers represent some 20 per cent of all retired Britons living in Australia. During 2018, 1.2 million British expat retirees claimed their pensions from an overseas base, with the US, Spain, Ireland and Canada taking up the remainder of the top five destinations. When the frozen pensions scandal first erupted some years ago, articles focused on one British female long-stay and decidedly long-lived expat pensioner in Oz, who’d been receiving her £6 state pension for several decades. The British government’s take on this scandal dates back same 70 years, despite frequent lawmaker attempts to get the rule scrapped. Hoping for change in the near future won’t work, as older UK citizens living overseas are quite simply ‘off the radar’ for all but a very few UK politicians.
25-Nov-19 – Conservative Party Manifesto: Get Brexit Done and Unleash Britain’s Potential
We will not raise the rate of income tax, VAT or National Insurance.
Above all, we will listen to the people who have felt left behind by the last few decades of economic growth and want to have more control of their future.
We will focus on your priorities…to ensure that we deliver world-class public services so that you can have the help and support you need throughout your life.
We need to have a [health] system to give every person the dignity and security that they deserve.
We aim to have 80 per cent of UK trade covered by free trade agreements within the next three years, starting with the USA, Australia, New Zealand and Japan [‘frozen’ countries].
We will also forge stronger links with the Commonwealth.
We will put you first
Our job is to serve you, the people.
We will create a fair society
“No cut to winter fuel allowance or bus pass, keep the pensions ‘triple lock’ to increase pensions.”
Analysis: No repeat of the 2017 threat to winter fuel payments and pensions which alienated core Tory voters.
£2billion to fill in potholes…
Keeping the triple lock on the state pension, ensuring it rises by at least 2.5 per cent a year.
24-Nov-19 – BBC News: General election 2019: Boris Johnson vows to ‘forge a new Britain’
– A “triple tax lock”, ruling out increases in the headline rate of income tax and National Insurance, as well as VAT, for five years.
– The “triple lock” on the UK state pension – meaning it will rise by the rate of average earnings, inflation or 2.5%, whichever is higher – will be retained as will the older person’s free bus pass.
– £500m a year for four years for filling potholes – almost 10 times the amount promised by the party in an announcement in March.
…..Seriously, Boris?? This is more important than uprating ‘frozen’ pensions?
23-Nov-19 – The Guardian: Labour pledges £58bn for women caught in pension trap
23-Nov-19 – The Guardian: ‘The Tories stole my state pension when I was 60, now I want it back’
23-Nov-19 – The Independent: Women hit by pension age changes could impact general election, say experts
“We’ll continue to stand up for the women born in the 1950s who have been short-changed by the accelerated timetable for increases to the state pension age. The SNP calls on all parties to join us in pledging that the next Parliament will be the one where we fix the pensions system. Pensioners and those approaching retirement age shouldn’t have to worry about making ends meet.”
– Mhairi Black is the SNP candidate for Paisley and Renfrewshire South
“We owe it to both pensioners and the younger generation to rebuild our pensions system with security and sustainability at its heart. Labour’s pensions policy will ensure that everyone can look forward to a decent quality of life in retirement. We are committed to maintaining the triple lock, ensuring the state pension continues to increase each year in line with the highest of inflation, earnings or 2.5 per cent. We will consult further with [WASPI] women affected as to what support we can put in place once in Government to help ensure that all these women have security and dignity in older age. More than ever, as our population grows older, we need pensions that deliver for the many, not the few.”
– Margaret Greenwood is Labour’s Shadow Work and Pensions Minister
“UK pensions policy is simply not fit for an increasingly ageing population. For too many pensioners, financial security remains unattainable – a quite unacceptable blight on the fifth richest country in the world. In government, the Liberal Democrats would prioritise retaining the triple lock on the basic state pension, ensuring that – every year – it rises in line with the highest of wages, prices or 2.5 per cent. Nobody should fear retirement, yet more and more people are faced with increasing financial difficulties in later life.”
– Tim Farron is Lib Dem spokesperson for work and pensions
“The Green Party will transform our social welfare and pension system by phasing in a Universal Basic Income (UBI). This will provide essential security to everyone in society – but especially to people who rely on their pension as their primary source of income. We think financial security is a key building block of a good society. The Universal Basic Income for pensioners will be an unconditional payment for all pensioners, regardless of income and savings. Every pensioner in the UK would receive £178 a week.”
– Amelia Womack is the deputy leader of the Green Party of England and Wales
“Because voters should know that Conservatives will support people through the state pension, which thanks to our action has increased pensioner incomes – from April this will be worth an extra £343 for the new state pension next year. The full basic state pension will be £1,900 higher than in 2010.”
– Guy Opperman is Minister for Pensions
21-Nov-19 – The Guardian: Jeremy Corbyn urges public to vote for ‘manifesto of hope’
21-Nov-19 – Labour Election Manifesto: Funding Real Change
Labour party commit to uprate ‘frozen’ pensions. Their cost estimates:
2020-21 – £55 million;
2021-22 – £97 million;
2022-23 – £146 million;
2023-24 – £198 million.
This figure was estimated by the House of Commons Library by taking the total expenditure on frozen pensions in 2018-19 and applying the Office of Budget Responsibility’s annual ‘triple lock’ uprating forecast to each of the following years. Calculations are based on DWP Benefit Expenditure and Caseload Tables, DWP Stat-Xplore State Pension dataset and the OBR Economic and Fiscal Outlook March 2019.
21-Nov-19 – IFA Magazine: Labour manifesto – the potential impact on people’s finances and long term savings
Labour manifesto – Uprate the state pension for British pensioners overseas
20-Nov-19 – Daily Express: Planning for retirement: Boosting pensions to state pension income – five questions to ask
“The reality is the state pension alone is a lot less than the minimum wage salary at around £8,500. For most people it’s unlikely this will give you the kind of lifestyle you might have in mind later on in life.”
– Laura Laidlaw, Head of Customer Communications at Standard Life
19-Nov-19 – Cayman Compass: UK election delays JMC
The annual Overseas Territories Joint Ministerial Council (JMC) brings together political leaders from the Overseas Territories and UK ministers and is the principle forum for reviewing and implementing strategies for promoting the security and good governance of the OTs and their economic and social development, including ‘frozen’ pensions.
19-Nov-19 – Daily Express: State pension age? You could get £140 off electricity bill this winter – who qualifies?
….something else ‘frozen’ pensioners don’t get…
16-Nov-19 – The Independent: Most people don’t receive full state pension, government figures reveal
“Putting aside the thorny question whether the state pension alone can provide an adequate standard of living, the truth is that most people retiring since the reforms in 2016 do not even receive the full amount of state pension…It raises concerns that the level of the ‘safety net’ income provided by the state pension may be lower than people think…..”
But the idea of financially comfortable retirees topping up a healthy private retirement income with the state benefit isn’t accurate either. Research shows that the over-65s rely heavily on the state pension for their income, with £6 in every £10 coming from the state.
15-Nov-19 – Daily Express: Pension warning: Over 50s ‘facing £135k pension shortfall’ for moderate retirement
The Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) published a report which estimated that a single person could expect to need £20,200 per year in order to enjoy a moderately comfortable retirement. This was calculated to cover basic expenditure and some luxuries such as a holiday in Europe.
Click here for Summary;
Click here for Detail
14-Nov-19 – Daily Express: State pension: DWP figures reveal most people not paid full new state pension – are you?
“DWP figures show of the 1.1 million who receive new state pension, only 44 percent or nearly 500,000 people receive the full amount.”
– Stephen Lowe, group communications director at Just Group
13-Nov-19 – Daily Express: State pension: Inflation drops to three-year low in major boost for pensioners
“If price inflation remains at 1.5 percent this boosts retirees’ purchasing power by 2.4 percent”
– Steven Cameron, Pensions Director at Aegon
….not if you are a “frozen” pensioner though. Current inflation rate in Australia and Canada is around 1.9%, and retirees’ purchasing power is negative due to no increase to their state pension.
12-Nov-19 – Daily Express: Retirement UK: Low income retired homeowners ‘most likely to miss out on state help’
“..the lowest income group (the bottom quintile) receive an average £936 per year in state benefits, which is eight percent of their total income…..these figures prove that retired households with the lowest incomes receive the least State help”
How much are you getting in state benefits?
12-Nov-19 – International Investment: British expats face losing £50k with pension freeze
“The same must be said about the half million UK pensioners living outside the UK and EU whose pensions are frozen, who include military veterans, former nurses and teachers.
“Many have served the UK in its darkest hours and are now being plunged into poverty because their State pension continues to reduce in value year-on-year.”
– Cross party group of 40 MPs writing to Thérèse Coffey, Secretary of State at DWP
….is you can stand it, click here to see how much you have lost out on….
11-Nov-19 – This is Money – Steve Webb: Why is my friend getting a bigger state pension when he was contracted out much longer than me? Steve Webb replies
11-Nov-19 – Emigrate.co.uk: Brit expats in Europe could lose almost £50K through state pension freeze
“British expats who choose a ‘frozen pension’ destination could lose as much as £50,000 in pension income over the years……the many British expat retirees caught up in this cruel law could be forgiven for thinking they’re the forgotten ones whose country of birth no longer cares.”
…and so say all of us…..
10-Nov-19: National Seniors (Australia): Frozen British expat pensioners urged to ‘keep on fighting’
“…it is extremely punishing to people at the end of their lives; at their most vulnerable time and usually when they have emigrated to be with their children. It’s completely disgraceful”
– Miriam Margolyes – Actor, Harry Potter
10-Nov-19: GOV.UK: Apply to vote by proxy if you’re living overseas
10-Nov-19: Euroweekly News: Some expatriates living in Spain can vote in the UK General Election
British citizens living abroad may vote in UK general elections, referendums and European Parliament elections for up to 15 years after leaving the UK but may only do so if they were registered to vote in the UK while living there.
10-Nov-19 – Sunday Express: State pension to rise: Boris Johnson to pledge maintaining triple lock if he wins election
Boris Johnson will vow to protect the pensions triple lock in a bid to win over the demographic of voters most likely to head to the polls on December 12.
….but nothing for ‘frozen’ pensioners….
6-Nov-19 – Olive Press (Spain): Thousands of British expats in Spain to be denied vote in UK General Election, as Brexit uncertainty lingers
The 15-year-old rule means that UK nationals living abroad for that duration are denied a vote in their homeland.
6-Nov-19 – iexpats: MPs Back Expat Battle Against State Pension Injustice
5-Nov-19 – BPiA: Fair Play Newsletter
5-Nov-19 – Lansdown Hargreaves: Retirees will benefit from a state pension boost
“For anyone entitled to the full basic state pension, it’s set to increase from £129.20 to £134.25 per week – a total of £262.60 extra over the next year. This is the highest percentage increase to the state pension since 2012″
…..however, the increase for 520,000 ‘frozen’ pensioners next year is £0.00, exactly the same as it was in 2012….
5-Nov-19 – Daily Express: Election 2019: Can expats vote? Why expats should vote on December 12 – claim
4-Nov-19 – Daily Express: State pension increase of 3.9% and tax cuts for workers part of £5billion Tory windfall
3-Nov-19 – Sunday Express: State Pension increase: Benefit to rise in biggest hike for eight years
3-Nov-19 – BBC News: Benefits freeze to end in 2020, government confirms
The freeze in benefit payments is to come to an end next year, the government has confirmed.
…however, this doesn’t include the State Pension…
“Boris Johnson is to hand voters a windfall by ending the benefits freeze as part of a multi-billion pound package of Election spending promises which has caused mounting alarm in the Treasury”.
….but still no sign of pension unfreezing for 520,000 ‘frozen’ pensioners living in over 100 countries….
1-Nov-19 – Moneyfacts.co.uk: State Pension to rise from April 2020
“From April 2020, the State Pension is set to rise, making millions of pensioners around £350 a year better off. The [triple lock] system was set up to be fairer and to avoid retirees being caught in the ‘pension poverty’ trap”.
….really???? What about the 520,000 UK pensioners living in “frozen” countries, who have never received an increase to their State Pension? They live in the ‘pension poverty’ trap….
1-Nov-19 – The Connexion (France): Lords say Britons in EU need more protection
The government should commit to uprating [increasing annually] the pensions of UK nationals living in the EU for as long as they continue to live there.
….but what about the 520,000 UK nationals who live in “frozen” countries, and NEVER have their UK State Pension increased?
31-Oct-19 – Daily Express: State pension claimants will get an extra payment this Christmas – how much is the bonus?
State pension claimants could qualify for the £10 Christmas Bonus
….but not the 520,000 UK pensioners living in ‘frozen’ countries….
31-Oct-19 – The Scotsman: Linlithgow and East Falkirk MP calls for state pension freeze to end
“The UK state pension is the worst in the devolved world. This issue of frozen pensions is yet another example of UK pension injustice. The Government recently announced that it will up-rate the pensions of all UK pensioners living in the EU for three years until a reciprocal agreement is made after Brexit, but it still refuses to extend this right to pensioners living in ‘frozen’ countries, who include military veterans, former nurses and teachers. The UK Government’s policy on frozen pensions is archaic and unjust, pushing pensioners into poverty and hardship. The Tories cannot be trusted on pensions.”
– Martin Day, MP, Linlithgow & East Falkirk Constituency (SNP)
30-Oct-19 – Iexpats: British Expats In Europe Struggle To Pay Their Bills
“There is real hardship. The impression sometimes given by the tabloid press is that everyone on pension age living in the EU is supping prosecco on a terrace in Tuscany or something like that…there are huge numbers of people who made a very rational decision years ago to move because they could afford to move because they could make their pension go a bit further in countries like rural France or in Spain and they are in desperate straits because of this.”
There are 520,000 UK Pensioners who took similar decisions when they emigrated, but now live in a “frozen” country – no annual uprating for their UK State Pension….EVER
29-Oct-19 – End Frozen Pensions: Letter to Rt Hon Dr Thérèse Coffey MP
…that those who ‘helped make our country the success it is’ must receive the full pension to which they are entitled. It is perverse, unjust and wrong that this pension is not universal to all UK pensioners. We call on you to end the ‘freezing’ of all UK state pensions to show that you truly honour the people who made the UK.
29-Oct-19 – Pensions Age: Govt will continue to uprate state pension beyond 2023 in five European countries
British citizens will continue to get their state pension uprated in April 2023 and afterwards if they live in Ireland, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein.
…and yet, the DWP has always maintained that they would not enter into anymore bilateral agreements because they are too expensive. One rule for UK pensioners living in those five countries, and a totally different rule for the 520,000 UK pensioners living in 150 “frozen” countries….
29-Oct-19 – The Guardian: End anxiety of UK citizens in EU, government urged
29-Oct-19 – The London Economic: Potential healthcare and pensions “lottery” for UK citizens living in EU after Brexit
29-Oct-19 – The Connexion (France): ‘UK lied to me over pension rights’
A British woman living in Normandy has launched a campaign called British Pensioners for Justice in protest at the removal of lifetime guarantees on pensions and healthcare due to Brexit.
28-Oct-19 – Emigrate.co.uk: Would-be UK expat retirees urged to choose non-frozen pension destinations
an ‘enduring injustice’ on over half a million British pensioners…it’s now time to honour retired British citizens who’ve helped make the UK what it is…..the cruel ruling has caused extreme anger as well as deep distress and hardship amongst those affected.
27-Oct-19 – This is Money: MPs call for end to freeze on State pension for half a million expats living outside of Europe
“…it is time to ‘truly honour the people who made the UK’ whose pension payments have been frozen in time…..many have served the UK in its darkest hours and are now being plunged into poverty because their State pension continues to reduce in value year-on-year”
24-Oct-19 – Daily Express: State pension to rise next year but not for those in certain countries – are you affected?
22-Oct-19 – The Guardian: British pensioners in Europe struggle to make ends meet, committee told
Retired Britons in Europe are not sipping prosecco on a warm terrace but are struggling to make ends meet and fear further poverty because of Brexit, a parliamentary committee has been told….. retirees in the EU living exclusively or almost exclusively on British pensions have already suffered a decrease in their income because of the depreciation in sterling since the referendum.
– Jeremy Morgan, QC
……in the period May 2016 to November 2019, the £ has fallen 5% against the Australian Dollar and 9% against the Canadian Dollar and Euro.
22-Oct-19 – Gov.UK: Warm Home Discount Scheme
“You could get £140 off your electricity bill for winter 2019 to 2020 under the Warm Home Discount Scheme”
….BUT NOT IF YOU ARE A ‘FROZEN’ PENSIONER…..
21-Oct-19 – BBC News: Brexit: What is in Boris Johnson’s new deal with the EU?
21-Oct-19 – Hope Standard: LETTER: British Pensioners weigh in on Canadian election
…an antiquated and unjust British policy of denying Canadian-resident UK-pensioners with annual indexation is costing the Canadian economy close to $1 billion every year.
20-Oct-19 – Brits in Toronto: Brexit: Are we over the line yet?
17-Oct-19 – Daily Express: State pension farce as inflation-busting hike wiped out by new TV licence fee
17-Oct-19 – Christian Science Monitor: For Brits living in Europe, Brexit throws a once clear future into doubt
16-Oct-19 – The Local (France): REMINDER: What the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement means for British citizens in France
No bumper rise in our pension, though. There are 95,000 frozen pensioners who receive less than £20 per week…
16-Oct-19 – HMT: Freedom of Information Request: National Insurance Fund
15-Oct-19 – The Local (France): Brexit: The unanswered questions that remain for Brits in France
Under a deal pensions will continue to be uprated each year as they are now. That means British pensioners in France will still see their pensions increase each year.
But if there’s a no-deal Brexit the UK government has committed to uprating pensions for three years so until the end of the 2022 tax year which is in March 2023.
15-Oct-19 – Daily Express: State pension amount: Surge in people topping up NI contributions – but warning is issued
15-Oct-19 – The Connexion (France): UK’s no-deal report ‘offers no comfort to OAPs Abroad’
“This is not a matter of reciprocal arrangements. It is within the clear gift of the UK government to look after our own people. Will my Right Honorable friend give a clear undertaking that that will be done?”
– Sir Roger Gale (talking to Michael Gove in the Cabinet Office
15-Oct-19 – UK Government: [Brexit] No Deal Readiness Report (Michael Gove)
“With regard to UK state pensions paid to eligible UK state pension recipients living in Member States, in the event of leaving without a deal the UK has now committed to uprate state pensions paid in the EU for a further three years until the end of March 2023, beyond our initial one-year commitment to uprate for the financial year 2019/20. This means we will uprate state pensions for eligible people in the EU for 2020/21, 2021/22 and 2022/23. This additional commitment would extend both to those UK State Pension recipients in the EU on 31 October 2019 and to those pensioners who move there from the UK or start to receive their UK State Pension during the period of the commitment. During that period, we will continue to seek EU-wide reciprocity and/or agreements to maintain the current policy with individual Member States.
Meanwhile, our State Pension remains frozen…
14-Oct-19 – The Local (Spain): OPINION: The only way to protect all our rights is to stop Brexit altogether
11-Oct-19 – International Express: Expats miss out on bumper rise in cash for pensioners
11-Oct-19 – The National: Delegates at SNP conference urged to back indy pension plan
..a typical British worker will, at retirement, receive a state pension and other benefits worth around 29% of what they had previously been earning. In Italy and the Netherlands it’s more than 80%.
11-Oct -19 – This is Money: Britain’s worst-off pensioners receive thousands of pounds less in state support than the richest, study finds
…the average income of the poorest pensioners at £8,840 falls some way short of the Joseph Rowntree minimum income standard – £10,452 a year for a single pensioner
….the average State Pension for ‘Frozen’ pensioners is £2,567 per year, and they do not qualify for any UK Govenment benefits….
10-Oct-19 – The Express: Millions of UK’s poorest pensioners getting ‘least state support’ – could you claim more?
9-Oct-19 – The Express: Why state pension ruling against women was RIGHT, says ANN WIDDECOMBE
8-Oct-19 – Iexpats.com: Bumper State Pension Boost On The Way For Expats
8-Oct-19 – The Express: Could you work beyond state pension age? Where people work beyond age 65 across world
6-Oct-19 – Sydney Morning Herald: UK State Pension options to generate retirement income
6-Oct-19 – The Guardian: Pensions scandal: broken promises, cruelty and contempt
4-Oct-19 – The Independent: High Court state pension loss highlights female funding crisis
3-Oct-19 – BBC News: Defeat for women in state pension age challenge
3-Oct-19 – High Court Judgment: UK High Court dismisses women’s state pension age claim
1-Oct-19 – Daily Express: State pension amount: Why thousands of pensioners in EU are being contacted this week
“Pensioners in Europe who have paid into the system for years deserve peace of mind over their future finances”
– Work and Pensions Secretary Dr. Thérèse Coffey
…AND WHAT ABOUT FROZEN PENSIONERS – DON’T THEY COUNT?
30-Sep-19 – International Investment: UK government writes to British expats but pension freeze risk remains
30-Sep-19 – Money Observer: Pensioners on course for state pension increase well ahead of inflation
30-Sep-19 – Daily Express: State pension joy as payments to soar four percent next year in inflation-busting hike
…but no joy for Frozen Pensioners…
27-Sep-19 – The Local (France): Government’s no-deal Brexit letters to Brits around Europe cause alarm
27-Sep-19 – Pensions Age: Govt sends state pension letters ‘reassuring’ EU expats
23-Sep-19 – The Local (Spain): Reciprocity or nothing: Brits in Spain will have rights withdrawn if UK doesn’t give same guarantees to Spaniards
22-Sep-19 – Sunday Express: Expats discuss Brexit and their state pension after move to Portugal
“I’ve contributed to the pension and there’s absolutely no reason really, wherever I lived in the world, why I shouldn’t get the same pension than I would if I was staying in the UK”
David John Griffiths Barnes, 68, Living in Lisbon, Spain
510,000 FROZEN UK PENSIONERS LIVING IN OVER 100 COUNTRIES WOULD AGREE WITH YOU, DAVID
19-Sep-19 – Wikipedia features: Frozen Pensions political activist Anne Puckridge
19-Sep-19 – International Investment: 1.3m UK expats face continued retirement and healthcare uncertainty
17-Sep-19 – The Connexion (France): UK should act now on pensions, health, benefits
15-Sep-19 – Sunday Express: Two sisters – two very different pension payouts: Are you getting the right amount?
“Monica explained that while she knew she wouldn’t get the “full” state pension, she hadn’t been aware that it would be frozen from the time she left the UK.”
12-Sep-19 – Money Marketing: Steve Bee: UK state pension is at risk of becoming worthless
According to 2017 OECD figures, the UK does not have the most generous state pension. Pensioners in the UK receive 29 per cent of previous earnings for their state pensions, the OECD states. This means the UK ranks 24th on a global list of how much governments contribute to pensions as a percentage of average earnings.
9-Sep-19 – iExpats.com: Spain Is Top Retirement Destination For British Expats
The research showed one in four expats were not aware of countries with reciprocal state benefit arrangement with the UK – and only these countries increase the state pension in line with inflation each year.
8-Sep-19 – Yahoo: What no-deal Brexit means for your pension if you’re retired in the EU
The Department for Work and Pensions announced that Britons in the EEA receiving their state pensions would still under no-deal Brexit be entitled to the annual “triple lock” uprating—the highest of 2.5%, the rate of inflation or average earnings growth—in 2020, 2021 and 2022.
But what happens after 2022 is anybody’s guess at the moment.
6-Sep-19 – World Socialist Web Site: UK pensioners suffer massive increase in poverty
“The United Kingdom is a good example of the Beveridge-lite systems that have historically failed to combat old-age poverty.”
– Professor Bernhard Ebbinghaus, author of “Pension Reforms and Old Age Inequalities in Europe.”
4-Sep-19 – Euro Weekly News: Uprating guarantee for UK State Pension recipients living in Spain
4-Sep-19 – The Local (Spain): No-deal Brexit: British pensions to be uprated until 2022 if UK crashes out of EU
“While pensions have been uprated for British pensioners living in the EU they are not for others living in certain countries like Canada or Australia.”
4-Sep-19 – Olive Press (Spain): CONFIRMED: Government will uprate UK State Pension for those living in the EU until March 2023 in event of no-deal Brexit
4-Sep-19 – Olive Press (Spain): Retired British expats in Spain could suffer freeze in pensions under no-deal Brexit
“Work and Pensions Secretary, Amber Rudd, has suggested the removal of automatic pension increases in Spain would BENEFIT to the UK, referring to the £500m cost of ‘uprating’ expat retiree pensions across the world.”
4-Sep-19 – The Connexion (France): UK extends no-deal state pension uprating to 2022
4-Sep-19 – The Daily Telegraph: British expat pensioners should be worried – the good times won’t last forever
4-Sep-19 – Money International: No Deal Brexit State Pension Bombshell For Expats
“The UK is almost unique in the EU in distinguishing between pensioners who are living in the country and those that are not. If you have worked all your life in the UK, it should be a basic entitlement and up to the individual to decide where they want to live without being penalised. These people paid their contributions and taxes to the UK, and then retired to the EU on the basis that their pension would at least be increased for inflation. To move the goalposts for this vulnerable group when it is too late for them to do anything about it is simply immoral.”
– Jeremy Morgan, a retired barrister living in Italy and vice-chair of the “British in Europe” Brexit campaign group
4-Sep-19 – The Local (France): No-deal Brexit: British pensions to be uprated until 2022 if UK crashes out of EU
3-Sep-19 – Hilltop Monitor: No-deal Brexit commitment to uprate United Kingdom expat state pensions to 2023
3-Sep-19 – The Times: Amber Rudd’s pensions ‘guarantee’ is kick in the teeth for retired Brits in Europe
“Some struggle on in poverty, some return to the UK in desperation, at which point their pensions are uprated again. It’s unjust. Their treatment depends not on their national insurance contributions but entirely on whether the UK has signed a reciprocal social security pact with their country of destination.”
“Lord Randall of Uxbridge, the former Conservative MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip, Boris Johnson’s constituency, who is supporting the [frozen pensions] campaign, says it provides fresh ammunition. ‘If you are doing this for UK citizens in France and Spain, you should do it for UK citizens everywhere else in the world.'”
“If the Pru or Legal & General were to unilaterally slash private pension payments to customers just because they changed their home address there would be an outcry. The approach taken by the DWP is not so very different.”
– Patrick Hosking, Financial Editor, The Times
2-Sep-19 – Actuarial Post: Time limited pension increases a fear for ex pats in Europe
2-Sep-19 – Actuarial Post: No deal Brexit ending UK state pension upratings
2-Sep-19 – YourMoney.com: Expat pension increases guaranteed for three years
“The government says that it will only guarantee state pension increases for pensioners living in Europe until March 2023, if Britian leaves the EU without a deal, a move which pension experts have described as “deeply worrying”. The decision could pave the way for automatic increases for pensioners living in EU countries to be removed……Tom Selby, senior analyst at AJ Bell, says that over a 20-year retirement someone could lose out on around £50,000 in retirement income if their state pension was frozen at 2019/20 levels”
2-Sep-19 – International Investment: British expat pensions risk being frozen under no deal Brexit
“If the UK leaves the EU on bad terms with the rest of the Europe there is no guarantee that a new uprating arrangement will be reached, and today’s statement offers no assurance to pensioners that annual increases will continue after that point”
– Steve Webb, former Pensions Minister
2-Sep-19 – Daily Express: State pension to rise for expats living in EU for next 3 years in event of no deal
2-Sep-19 – International Adviser: Stay of execution for UK expat state pensions
“Anyone who is currently retired on the continent, or is considering doing so in the coming years, should factor in the possible loss of state pension uprating into their income planning.”
– Tom Selby, senior analyst at AJ Bell
2-Sep-19 – Money Observer: UK expat state pensions at risk from no-deal Brexit
2-Sep-19 – Financial Reporter: EU expats face state pension freeze post-Brexit
2-Sep-19 – FT Adviser: Govt reveals state pension plans for expats after Brexit
1-Sep-19 – The Guardian: Government branded immoral over pensions of UK citizens in EU
1-Sep-19 – Mirage News: Uprating guarantee for UK State Pension recipients living in EU
“I want to give them peace of mind that we will automatically continue to pay the State Pension they’re entitled to into their bank account as normal when we leave the EU”
– Amber Rudd – Secretary of State for Department Work and Pensions
BUT, WHAT ABOUT US?
1-Sep-19 – Gov.UK: Guarantee for UK State Pension recipients living in EU
Work and Pensions Secretary of State Amber Rudd said:
“This government is working hard to prepare for leaving the EU on 31 October, whatever the circumstances. We will be fully ready for Brexit, and are leaving in a way that protects the interests of citizens here and in EU member states. This guarantee will provide reassurance to the hundreds of thousands of people living in the EU who receive a UK State Pension that their pensions will continue to rise significantly each year, however we leave.”
BUT, WHAT ABOUT US?
28-Aug-19 – FT Adviser: Retirees on state pension ran out of money today
23-Aug-19 – Wired: Raising the retirement age to 75 won’t fix the UK’s pension problem
22-Aug-19 – The Local (France): LATEST: Your questions answered on a no-deal Brexit
“In a no-deal scenario the government has said it will continue to uprate only until December 31st 2020, after that it will be a case of striking reciprocal agreements with all 27 EU countries.”
22-Aug-19 – The Guardian: Work until 75? Many people won’t even live that long
“The pressing issue is not that pensions are too generous – but that they are increasingly hard to get, and far too small. British basic pensions are uniquely low – 16% of average earnings – compared with those of other developed nations”
“Tory peer called raising retirement age to 75 ‘immoral’ while Labour leader called it ‘discriminatory against working class'”
20-Aug-19 – Financial Mirror: Sterling has taken a pounding – don’t go down with it
“It has been a chastening experience for British expats, in Cyprus and around the globe, who have taken pride in the fact that a pound has traditionally bought more than one unit of most other currencies.
Now analysts are worried that the world’s fourth most traded currency could fall to parity against the euro and dollar.”
12-Aug-19 – The Majorca Daily Bulletin: Paying the price of Boris
“I have every sympathy with Britons living in the EU who are suffering from the decreasing value in the pound but this devaluation does not just apply to the Euro, it is worldwide and there are more British pensioners living outside the EU (and U.K.) than there are living in the EU. There are 510,000 British pensioners, living mainly in Commonwealth countries, who do not and never have received an annual increase, many now living in poverty and some of whom have been driven to suicide due to the penury forced upon them by the British government.
– John Duffy, Chairman, ICBP (letters to the Editor)
“Barry Pettett, 69, had been collecting national insurance (NI) stamps for years, but has now been told by HMRC that they won’t be accepted because they’re not stuck to an official card”
9-Aug-19 – The Local (Spain): Breaking point: British pensioners in Spain open up about money worries
“There is a large community of people in Spain who are reliant on some way in money from the UK. The largest group are pensioners.
“I buy less , go out less , buy cheaper. I have changed my spending habits and now “only goes out for a meal once every 3 or 4 weeks”.
– Peter Roberts, Pensioner living in Spain
2-Aug-19 – GOV.UK: The Quinquennial Review – GAD takes the long view
“…we project that without extra support in addition to National Insurance contributions, the Fund balance will fall rapidly to exhaustion in around 2033. Treasury grants would be required from around 2030”
– Government Actuary Department (GAD)
30-Jul-19 – Daily Express: State pension: Could no-deal Brexit affect state pension? ‘Concerns’ for British expats
“As the EU has repeatedly stated, ‘nothing is agreed until everything is agreed’, so the triple-lock and payments from the UK to an EU bank account may be at risk”
-Jason Porter, director of specialist expat financial advisory firm Blevins Franks
29-Jul-19 – Money International: Claiming a UK Pension as an Expat
29-Jul-19 – Brits in Kenya: Campaign fighting to end injustice of frozen pensions for British Expats
25-Jul-19 – Boris Johnson’s Cabinet
23-Jul-19 – Daily Mirror: Why even 39 years of paying NI isn’t enough to guarantee a full state pension
“They say if you pay into the state pension for 35 years, you get £168.60 a week. Except quite a lot of people have been paying in a lot longer and won’t get that much”
23-Jul-19 – Daily Mail: This is Money – Why won’t I get a full state pension after paying NI for 39 years?
23-Jul-19 – Royal London Life: Steve Webb – Topping up your State Pension
18-Jul-19 – Daily Express – State Pension UK: Amount won’t rise for some retirees living overseas – Are you affected?
“I will not give up the fight, either until I die, or until we get our pensions”
– Anne Puckridge, 94, End Frozen Pensions campaigner
11-Jul-19 – Livewire Livesey Blog: Frozen British Pensions Update July 2019
10-Jul-19 – The Connexion (France): Brexit Minister to raise rights with EU today
03-Jul-19 – Full Fact.org: This Comparison of Pensions in Different Countries is Misleading
24-Jun-19 – Caymans News Service: CIG faces big week hosting JMC
24-Jun-19 – Emigrate.co.uk: Would Boris as PM cause even more chaos for British expats in the EU?
20-Jun-19 – Expats Blog: Brit expat retirees advised to choose countries with UK state pension uprates
19-Jun-19 – Lancashire Telegraph: Ribble Valley MP in ‘frozen pensions’ plea to Tory leadership candidates
“The leadership election taking place over the coming weeks will settle not only who leads the Conservative Party, but also who will become the next Prime Minister.
Whoever this may be, they need tackle the issue of frozen pensions head-on, and I hope the frontrunners will make this into an election pledge”.
– Nigel Evans, MP for Ribble Valley
19-Jun-19 – The Local: Brexit: Why won’t the EU act to protect the rights of Britons in Europe?
19-Jun-19 – The Connexion (France): Ring-fence Britons’ Brexit rights – clarification
12-Jun-19 – Daily Express: State pension: Full list of countries where overseas pensioners WILL see payments go up
10-Jun-19 – Daily Express: State Pension frozen overseas: WW2 veteran, 94, vows to never ‘give up the fight’ – Part 2
“The excuses they [the DWP] give. Firstly it is money. They say that they can’t afford to backdate us. We’re not asking for backdating. The second point they say is they need a bilateral agreement [Freedom of Information request 2013/595 says quite clearly that reciprocal agreements are not required in order to uprate the State Pension]. The third one [the DWP say] is that they can’t afford it [despite the fact that there is a surplus of over £17 billion in the National Insurance Fund. It would cost only £600 million to uprate all of our State Pensions]”.
– Anne Puckridge, 94
9-Jun-19 – Daily Express: State pension frozen overseas: WW2 veteran recalls shock discovery DAYS before leaving UK – Part 1
“No country would treat its pensioners like that! No way would Britain, above all, do that to its fully paid up pensioners.”
– Anne Puckridge, 94
8-Jun-19 – Business Telegraph: State pension frozen overseas: WW2 veteran recalls shock discovery DAYS before leaving UK
“To cut costs we stopped printing the relevant leaflets.”
– International Pensions Centre, 2012
6-Jun-19 – Lancashire Post: Lancashire MP urges new PM to tackle frozen pensions
“The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has estimated that the uprating of pensions would cost around £600m per year, but this cost is meagre compared to the money that the UK saves when pensioners move abroad and do not use our social services or NHS”
– Nigel Evans, MP for Ribble Valley
6-Jun-19 – Daily Express: D-DAY SHAME: How pension of veteran, 96, was FROZEN at £48 a week
“Bernard [Jackson] is a true hero who served the UK in its darkest times. Despite this, the Government didn’t think it fit to give him the full UK state pension he earned”
– Campaign to End Frozen Pensions
5-Jun-19 – Town Close Financial Planning: Why moving abroad can affect your state pension
4-Jun-19 – Daily Express: State Pension age changes for women to face judicial review this week – are you affected?
31-May-19 – BPiA: For the Prime Minister’s Attention
10-May-19 – The Senior (Australia): Brexit silver lining for UK pensioners?
Image: Jim Tilley, British Pensions in Australia (BPIA)
9-May-19 – Livewire Livesey Blog: Frozen British Pensions Update May 2019
8-May-19 – The Guardian: UK and Ireland sign deal to guarantee rights of citizens after Brexit
9-May-19 – DWP: Fraud and Error Statistics
The Net Government Loss from Fraud and Error in the DWP for the 2018-19 was an eye-watering £3 BILLION – enough to pay for 5 years’ worth of Frozen Pensions….
2-May-19 – Money Marketing: Steve Bee: Will we ever have a state pension system to be proud of?
“Any financial adviser will tell you a pension that does not increase in payment will probably halve in value during a “typical” 20-year retirement…… We need a state pension system that we can both rely on and be proud of, whatever age we are; one that cares for our senior citizens and that quickly puts things right when they go wrong”
– Steve Bee – Director, Jargonfree Benefits
26-Apr-19 – Which?: Is the future of the state pension triple lock in doubt?
25-Apr-19 – Daily Express: State pension UK: Lords urge government to scrap triple lock – what does it mean for you?
25-Apr-19 – IPE: Peers call for removal of triple lock on UK state pension
24-Apr-19 – Financial Reporter: Reliance on State Pension at highest level since 1995
24-Apr-19 – Emigrate.co.uk: Expat pensioners in France under threat of being thrown out due to income requirements
18-Apr-19 – Onties.com: State pension SHOCK for British expatriates: 510,000 retirees stuck with FROZEN pension
18-Apr-19 – Daily Express: State pension SHOCK for British expats: 510,000 retirees stuck with FROZEN pension
18-Apr-19 – Thai Vision Forum: State Pension (2018)
16-Apr-19 – International Investment: UK lawmakers fight expat frozen pensions policy
“Why do they get the increase in Jamaica but not Trinidad, in the United States but not Canada, and in the Philippines but not Indonesia? It is crazy”
16-Apr-19 – Emigrate.co.uk: The fight to repeal expat frozen pensions isn’t over yet
15-Apr-19 – Daily Express: State pension: 510,000 UK pensions frozen if you live here – how much should you get?
14-Apr-19 – The Guardian: Frozen state pensions: MPs call for vote on ‘cruel’ policy
“The government has cynically tied together the unjust freezing of the pensions of 510,000 UK pensioners who paid into the system, many of whom served this country, with increases in important social security benefits,” he said. “This blocks many MPs from joining me in standing against this injustice. This is grossly unfair and against democracy. I firmly believe that MPs deserve a vote on the frozen pension policy and that is why I am praying against this statutory instrument to force the government to allow debate on the issue.”
– Sir Peter Bottomley, MP
13-Apr-19 – This is Money: MPs plan a revolt against rules that hit the pensions of older British citizens living abroad
9-Apr-19: Recent decision: DWP v Poor pensioner-bilateral agreements
8-Apr-19 – UK Government: The Social Security Benefits Up-rating Regulations 2019
“3. Regulation 5 of the Social Security Benefit (Persons Abroad) Regulations 1975(c) (application of disqualification in respect of up-rating of benefit) and regulation 21 of the State Pension Regulations 2015(d) (entitlement to state pension for overseas residents) shall apply to any additional benefit payable by virtue of the Up-rating Order and to any up-rating increase as defined in section 22(1) of the Pensions Act 2014(e) respectively”
6-Apr-19 – British Pensions in Australia: Pension Loss Factors
6-Apr-19 – Department for Exiting the EU: Citizens’ Rights – UK nationals in the EU Policy Paper
…eligible UK nationals living in the EU will continue to receive an uprated UK State Pension for the financial year 2019/20 and have set out our intention to continue to do so thereafter, subject to reciprocal arrangements being put in place with the EU or Member States.
4-Apr-19 – The Independent: Let Us Vote: New campaign launched to give everyone living in UK the right to vote in elections
3-Apr-19 – Early Day Motion (EDM) 2265
1-Apr-19 – International Investment: Cyprus among the most to lose with Brexit
“At the end of that [transition] period, UK and Cyprus will seek a longer-term bilateral agreement to secure reciprocal healthcare for Britons in Cyprus and Cypriots in the UK, according to the British High Commission.”
29-Mar-19 – State Pension Erosion – 1987 – 2019
29-Mar-19: Daily Express: State pension UK: Amount will rise next week – reason you may not get increase revealed
“The state pension amount is rising on April 6 2019, but some people won’t reap the increase.
This excludes Canada or New Zealand. This means that some people who have travelled elsewhere to spend their retirement years may not reap the upcoming rise”
28-Mar-19 – The Local (Italy): What would no-deal Brexit mean for Brits in Italy? Here’s what we know so far
19-Mar-19 – Seniors News (Australia): Brit ex-pats in battle to get pension upgrade
19-Mar-19 – The Guardian: No-deal Brexit: UK to pay some health costs of retired Britons in EU
“The UK government has committed to fund healthcare for UK nationals (and others for whom the UK is responsible) who have applied for, or are undergoing, treatments in the EU prior to and on exit day, for up to one year, to protect the most vulnerable,”
– Stephen Hammond (Health Minister)
15-Mar-19 – Property Investor Today: Brits’ access to healthcare and pensions in Spain guaranteed until 2020
12-Mar-19 – ABC News (Australia): Brexit offers glimmer of hope to British retirees in Australia with frozen pensions
“And if maybe fraud is too strong a word, but that’s the way it feels. It feels like I’m being defrauded of something I’m actually entitled to.”
– Derek Woodall, retired, but still having to work part-time
11-Mar-19 – UK Government: The Social Security Benefits Up-rating Order 2019
10-Mar-19 – ABC News (Australia): Brexit offers glimmer of hope as Miriam Margolyes joins British retirees’ fight for fair go on pensions
“We expats have contributed to these pensions through the national insurance scheme, we’ve paid our dues there, and we’re simply not getting what we’ve paid for.”
– Retired doctor Don Ingham has seen his UK pension effectively halve in value since he came to this country with his Australian wife in 1970.
8-Mar-19 – Sir Peter Bottomley, MP: Frozen Pensions Abroad
SIR PETER CAMPAIGNS ALONGSIDE COLLEAGUES, LORDS AND COMMUNITY LEADERS TO URGE THE GOVERNMENT TO END THE CRUEL POLICY OF PENSION FREEZING.
6-Mar-19 – What Do They Know: Freedom of Information (FOI) 2019/06464
“The Government is committed to reaching an agreement on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. Under the terms of the EU Withdrawal Agreement, the UK would continue to uprate pensions to UK State Pensioners in the EU who fall within the scope of the Withdrawal Agreement. Negotiations on a future agreement on social security coordination with the EU are still ongoing and the Government has set out its intention to include uprating of State Pension in this agreement
– Department of Work and Pensions (DWP)
1-Mar-19 – Full Fact: What happens to the money from National Insurance Contributions?
22-Feb-19 – Department for Exiting the European Union: Common Travel Area Guidance
You also have the right to access social security benefits on the same basis as citizens of the state you are in. The UK and Irish Governments have concluded a bilateral agreement to ensure that these rights will continue to be protected after the UK leaves the EU
15-Feb-19 – Pensions Age: Govt ‘committed’ to triple lock and reducing pensioner poverty
14-Feb-19 – FTAdviser: Uprating frozen pensions to cost £3 billion
Baroness Ros Altmann said she appreciated the reluctance of DWP to automatically uprate state pensions for affected pensioners, especially “as there is evidence that some of the money would merely reduce means tested support that other governments pay to pensioners on low incomes…. The problems that could arise and the extreme uncertainty that would impact British citizens who have retired to EU countries and could lose their uprating as a result of Brexit, might be an opportunity to reconsider the moral case for unfreezing these pensions.”
…the cost, over five years, to uprate Frozen Pensions is £3bn. The excess in National Insurance Contributions in the 2018-19 year alone was over £5bn – you do the math….
14-Feb-19 – Pensions Age: DWP estimates uprating state pensions in ‘frozen rate’ countries cost at £3bn
“Over half a million people are understandably furious that, having paid into the system and retired abroad, they find their state pensions frozen. Over the course of someone’s retirement this could have a huge impact, potentially costing more than £50,000 in state pension income. For many this might be the difference between living comfortably and struggling to make ends meet”
– AJ Bell Senior Analyst
14-Feb-19 – GOV.UK: Estimated costs of uprating State Pension in frozen rate countries
4-Feb-19 – Department of Work and Pensions: Government agrees deal to protect social security rights of UK and Irish citizens living and working in each other’s state
31-Jan-19 – Government Actuary’s Department: Report by the Government Actuary on: The draft Social Security Benefits Up-rating Order 2019; and The draft Social Security (Contributions) (Rates, Limits and Thresholds Amendments and National Insurance Funds Payments) Regulations 2019
23-Jan-19 – International Express: Actress backs expats’ fight for fair pensions
15-Jan-19 – International Express: Pensions Clampdown (letters to the editor)
13-Jan-2019 – Sunday Express: Scandal of expats denied full pension