Free pension statement for over 55s
24 February 2015
The Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) announced earlier this month that a free government service to help millions of people better understand their State Pension is being expanded. Anyone over the age of 55 is now able to request a personalised State Pension statement, giving them an estimate of what they are likely to receive based on their current National Insurance (NI) record. Until this week the scheme was only open to people over the age of 60.
This further roll out of the service – which has already issued more than 76,000 statements since its launch in September 2014 – comes ahead of ground-breaking new pension freedoms which come into effect from April 2015.
Extending the service will equip people with vital information as they consider their options under the new rules.
Minister for Pensions Steve Webb said:
“I’ve always been clear that people should be given the freedom to make their own financial decisions – but it’s crucial everyone has all the information to help them to make the right choices.
We are making sure people have the resources and support they need ahead of the new freedoms in April, so they can take the time to plan how to best use their pension saving for a secure retirement.
Now we have expanded the statement service, there is no reason why anyone who wants to exercise their new pension freedoms on day one shouldn’t be able to. That said, there is nothing magical about 6 April, and many people will want to take their time, both to consider fully all the options and to see what new financial products come on the market during 2015.”
A State Pension statement gives individuals an estimate of how much they may get under the new State Pension based on their current NI record. It also provides helpful information explaining how this position may change with further NI contributions or credits.
Before people take advantage of the new freedoms, they will also be encouraged to seek free and impartial guidance on their retirement choices from the new government service, Pension Wise. This will encourage users to obtain a pension statement, as well as providing other information through face-to-face sessions for those who want them.