• PENSIONSANDSAVINGS.COM

    From Ros Altmann:economist and pensions,
    investment and retirement policy expert

  • pensionsandsavings.com

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    Author: Ros Altmann

    Pension Credit take-up campaign is very timely as pensioner poverty is rising

    Pension Credit take-up campaign is very timely as pensioner poverty is rising

    Delighted to see another campaign trying to help poorest pensioners claim the money they need and are entitled to by improving Pension Credit take-up. Pension Credit (which could be re-named ‘Pensioner Top-up’) has lowest take-up of all means-tested benefits, with over a third of those entitled failing to claim since 2010. Official figures suggest unclaimed Pension Credit means pensioner households missing out on an average £1600 a year. As inflation soars, this failure will increase pensioner poverty from last year’s…

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    Spring Statement – great as far as it goes, but nothing for pensioners, not even the poorest

    Spring Statement – great as far as it goes, but nothing for pensioners, not even the poorest

    Congratulations to Chancellor for bold moves to help working families. But nothing for pensioners struggling, no improvement in their pensions – just 3.1% rise when inflation today is 6.2% and forecast to be 7.4% this year! Clear priority is for workers and businesses, with nothing to help the elderly. Prioritise working families, businesses, skills training: The Chancellor’s Spring Statement shows a careful judgement about priorities for the country as we move forward, with clear priority to helping working families, improving skills…

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    National Insurance rise will worsen the care crisis, not fix it! Government must urgently rethink

    National Insurance rise will worsen the care crisis, not fix it! Government must urgently rethink

    Increasing National Insurance will not ‘fix’ social care, it will make things worse. Social care has already suffered a triple whammy of official policies since Covid: Premature hospital discharges during Covid led to deaths for residents and staff Council funding has not kept up with cost increases facing care homes Mandatory vaccination has worsened long-standing staff shortages with loss of 40,000. … And now National Insurance hikes will be a fourth blow – increasing employment costs, reducing staff pay, aggravating…

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    National Insurance hike should be abandoned – wrong tax, wrong time, and won’t fix the crisis anyway

    National Insurance hike should be abandoned – wrong tax, wrong time, and won’t fix the crisis anyway

    Government should abandon plan to increase National Insurance in April – it’s the wrong policy at the wrong time and won’t fix social care anyway.  Proposed rise in NI hits lowest earners, employers and the young hardest.  Imposing a new tax on earnings and business, in the eye of a cost of living storm, is wrong.  A better solution would be a new nationwide social care insurance levy on all sources of income, spreading the burden across society more fairly….

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    Correcting State Pension underpayments may require DWP to bring in outside expertise

    Correcting State Pension underpayments may require DWP to bring in outside expertise

    Government may need private sector experts to help correct State Pension underpayments before more of the women die. The complexity of the calculations mean people can’t work out their State Pension and are totally reliant on Government to pay the right amount. Over-80s and thousands of divorced women should also be urgently assessed to correct underpayments. Interest on arrears and compensation are required to address the injustice. The Public Accounts Committee has issued a damning report highlighting ongoing problems of…

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    Work and Pensions Committee Report is right to focus on helping

    Work and Pensions Committee Report is right to focus on helping

    Work and Pensions Committee supports pension freedoms but urges Government, industry and Regulators to do far more to help consumers. Report suggests pension savers are left fumbling in the dark due to excessive complexity, disjointed regulation and insufficient guidance or advice. MPs rightly recommend that pension policy should be more about ‘people’ than ‘pension pots’.     Recommendations include: Government and Regulators need research and data on use of pension freedoms Increase take-up of PensionWise guidance – new nudges are not…

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    Pensioners need emergency Manifesto this winter as inflation soars but pensions lag behind

    Pensioners need emergency Manifesto this winter as inflation soars but pensions lag behind

    Pensioners facing a perfect storm this Winter as fuel prices and inflation soar but pensions fail to keep up.  Government should consider an emergency manifesto to address the living cost crisis for elderly citizens who are most vulnerable to the cold this winter.    Government response must include urgent plans to increase Pension Credit take-up and enable pensioners to afford to heat their homes with reduced prices or increased benefits.  Excess winter deaths among the elderly have averaged tens of…

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    State pension age review needs to consider more flexibility for those in poorest health as average life expectancy masks vast differentials across society

    State pension age review needs to consider more flexibility for those in poorest health as average life expectancy masks vast differentials across society

    State pension age review needs to consider flexibility to recognise vast differentials in healthy life expectancy.  Ever rising age disadvantages the poorest and least healthy as poorest Brits only stay healthy to around age 50, but wealthiest to age 70.  Wealthiest groups can get even higher pensions if they delay their pension age but poorest who are least likely to have private pensions, cannot get a penny early even after a 45 or 50 years National Insurance record.  Flexibility allowing…

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    Inflation at 5.1% is another blow to pensioners

    Inflation at 5.1% is another blow to pensioners

    Latest inflation numbers show State Pension rise of 3.1% will leave poorest pensioners struggling.  Pensioners have been stripped of the protection they were promised and many will struggle to afford heating.  The poorest pensioners have lost the earnings inflation protection for Pension Credit that was in law for around 20 years.  The latest inflation figures showing CPI inflation reached a two-year high of 5.1% last month, confirm again that the 3.1% increase for State Pensions is completely inadequate to protect…

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    Why the £86,000 care cap does not ‘fix’ the care crisis and exacerbates inequalities

    Why the £86,000 care cap does not ‘fix’ the care crisis and exacerbates inequalities

    The £86,000 social care cap is more about protecting the wealthiest than fixing social care. £86,000 cap is not the maximum families will spend on care – they will have to spend well over £100,000 before reaching the cap. The new proposed cap will still take most of the assets from families in areas with lower property values, while helping the wealthiest families keep most of their assets.   The headline is that nobody will have to spend more than £86,000…

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