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MPs propose early state pension access for women

Frank Field MP

The Work and Pensions committee has called on the Government to allow women affected by hikes in the state pension age to take their pot early, at a reduced rate.

The proposal comes in response to the Women Against State Pension Inequality campaign, which has argued increases in the state pension age have been poorly communicated and are unfair to a specific cohort of women born in the 1950s.

In particular, the Pensions Act 1995 set out a timetable for increasing the state pension age for women from 60 to 65, with the subsequent Pensions Act 2011 accelerating the equalisation of men’s and women’s state pension ages at 65 to November 2018.

The state pension age for men and women will then rise to 66 by November 2020, before increasing again to 67 between 2026 and 2028.

The Waspi campaign claims the 1995 and 2011 changes were poorly communicated and did not give women enough time to plan for retirement.

In response, the committee has proposed allowing those women most affected to draw their pension early. However, it acknowledges such a policy would increase Government spending by an unknown amount in the short-term.

Committee chairman and Labour MP Frank Field says: “This interim report opens up the debate which I’m sure MPs from all sides will want to pursue. We will begin taking fuller evidence on the options as soon as possible.”

Committee member and Conservative MP John Glen MP adds: “Lack of adequate notification of state pension age changes demands transitional arrangements, but implemented in an affordable way. This report recommends a possible way forward which the Government should now explore.”

If the option were pursued, policymakers would also need to decide whether to open it up to men as well as women.

Some in the industry have even suggested the early state pension access could be rolled out universally to those aged 55 and over, effectively extending the pension freedoms to the state system.

However, such a policy would leave the Treasury exposed to a potentially large and difficult to measure cashflow risk at a time of huge economic uncertainty.

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Comments

There are 3 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. None of my lady (or male) clients has complained about insufficient notice of the forthcoming changes to their SPA so it must have been adequately publicised for all of them to prepare accordingly. What have all those now whingeing been doing ~ pretending that somehow or other these changes wouldn’t apply to them?

  2. What about equality? Should male and females not be moved to the same retirement age and provision? The baby boomer generation also enjoyed. a lot of advantages subsequent generations will not receive so it is difficult for me to feel too much sympathy when they had the benefit of low house prices, Final Salary Pensions, fully funded NHS, surmountable national debt etc which the next generation will never receive. Sometimes it is better to count your blessings rather than waste more tax payer cash bemoaning apparent injustice – try being an immigrant, unemployed 18 year old, inner city first time buyer, a modern apprentice hunter, university student coarse payer….the list is endless.

    • Geraldine Higgins 31st January 2017 at 11:54 pm

      Just lets ponder on the word equality. What is equal about a woman who has a husband and children who has to go out to work
      she comes in from work and has to cook clean make dinner help with homework do the school run put he kids to bed and does it all again the next day. What do men do .Their wife’s get their clothes and their breakfasts ready they go to work have a hard day their wife’s have dinner ready for them when they get home. Women do 2 jobs everyday looking after the kids being the toughest and most important but they don’t get much credit for it.that is why they should retire earlier than men because they deserve it.

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