An MP has called the government’s plans to change the pension credit system a “backward step” and a “disgrace”.
In January the government announced it will limit access to pension credits for couples from May this year.
It has decided that pension credits will, from now on, only be available to couples where both partners have reached pension age, rather than the previous system whereby only one partner had to be of retirement age in order to receive credits.
Under the changes couples will receive Universal Credit instead.
The financial impacts are significant with couples on Universal Credit getting £114.81 a week, compared with £255.25 for a couple receiving pension credit.
This amounts to a potential loss of £7,320 a year.
MP Stephen Lloyd, who was formerly the Liberal Democrats’ pension spokesman before resigning the party whip last year, has tabled an early day motion calling on the government to reverse the changes.
He says: “If changes to pension credits are introduced. Many citizens could be as much as over £7,000 a year worse off.
“Much has been done in recent years to address the issue of pension poverty, with the pensions triple lock and the pension freedoms, but these changes are a backward step and, frankly, a disgrace.
“This is why I have tabled an early day motion to urge the government to reconsider.”