Most people get some state pension. It is paid by the government and is a secure income for life which increases by at least the rate of inflation each year. You build up your entitlement to the state pension by making national insurance contributions throughout your working life.
From April 2016, a new flat rate State Pension was introduced. For the current tax year 2017/2018 the full
new State Pension is £159.55 per week. To be eligible for the full state pension you will need 35 years NI record. As a result of the changes, you need at least 10 qualifying years on your national insurance record to qualify for it.
However, you might be entitled to more than this if you have built up entitlement to ‘additional state
pension’ under the old pre-April 2016 system – or less than this if you were ‘contracted out’ of the additional state pension.
Once you are 4 months away from state pension age, you can either claim your state pension or defer it.
If you decide to defer, your state pension will increase by 1% for every 9 weeks you defer. This works out as just under 5.8% for every full year. The extra amount is paid with your regular state pension payment when you finally take it.
The income from a state pension alone will allow you to maintain your living standards in retirement and should be accompanied by a personal pension to ensure that you can live out a comfortable retirement.
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