View the article online at http://citywire.co.uk/money/article/a660355
Pensioners miss out on benefits of £650 a year
Are pensioners doing the government a favour by failing to claim all the benefits to which they are entitled? It certainly looks that way according to new figures from the Department of Work and Pensions.
Pensioners are failing to claim all their state benefits and despite the ageing population the number of pension credit claimants has fallen.
Nearly a quarter, 23%, of pensioners are failing to claim what they are entitled to from the government and missing out on an average of £650 of income a year. The highest amount of unclaimed benefit totals £3,631 a year, according to figures by Just Retirement.
Of those that are claiming benefits, a third were not receiving their full entitlement, losing £213 a year on average.
New figures from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) also shows that the number of people claiming pension credit has fallen by 130,000 to 2.54 million as of May 2013, despite the UK becoming an ageing population.
Stephen Lowe, group external affairs and customer insight director at Just Retirement, said the extra money that pensioners are missing out on could make a huge difference to their lifestyles.
‘Many pensioners are struggling to make ends meet due to insufficient pension income and depressed savings returns. At the same time they are missing out by failing to claim the benefits they should be receiving, often to the tune of hundreds of pounds each year that could make a real different to their quality of lives,’ he said.
He added that more people were missing out on extra money each year.
‘The trend is that more people are missing out each year. The only positive point is that the amounts being missed have come down, but that may reflect a less generous benefits regime,’ said Lowe.
Pensioners are entitled to a range of benefits, some of which are regularly claimed and others which are not.
Guaranteed pension credit: given to people who are 65 and are receiving a weekly income of below £142.70 for an individual or £217.90 for a couple.
Savings pension credit: given to people over 65 who have a total weekly income from pensions, savings and investments of between £111.80 and £189.05 a week for an individual or between £178.35 and £277.23 a week for a couple.
The DWP estimates that one third of people fail to claim pension credit, including savings credit, losing income of between £2 billion and £2.8 billion a year.
News sponsored by:
Here at BlackRock, we help investors make more out of commodities with a range of innovative, flexible and resilient investment strategies.
From Brazil and Mexico, to Vietnam and Nigeria, the rapidly developing economies of Latin American and frontier markets, which are some of the smaller, less developed economies in the world, provides investors with a wealth of potential opportunities. Discover why BlackRock's investment trust range is well placed to help you make more of these exciting regions.
In this guide to investment trusts, produced in association with Aberdeen Asset Management, we spoke to many of the leading experts in the field to find out more.
More about this:
More from us
- Pensioners rack up debts as retirement income falls
- State pension reforms: what will I receive?
- Has your pension been cut by thousands of pounds?
- Q&A: state pension reform explained
- MPs to vote on 1% cap for working-age benefits
Tools from Citywire Money
From the Forums
Weekly email from The Lolly
Get simple, easy ways to make more from your money. Just enter your email address below
An error occured while subscribing your email. Please try again later.
Thank you for registering for your weekly newsletter from The Lolly.
Keep an eye out for us in your inbox, and please add email@example.com to your safe senders list so we don't get junked.