Chancellor George Osborne is to bring forward the introduction of the flat-rate state pension by a year. He stated this week that the proposed £144 per week state pension will now begin in April 2016 rather than 2017. This is a move which will be formally announced in Wednesday’s Budget.
Start date brought forward
Osborne's move brings the start date back to that which was originally proposed when the new pension measures were announced. The later decision to delay the start date until 2017 would have excluded around 85,000 women born between April and July 1953 who would have reached state pension age just months before the new terms came into force. They would have also been affected by the proposed increase of the state pension age for women to 65 by 2018 and 66 by 2020.
A welcome move
The news has been hailed as a positive step by many in the pensions arena including pensions expert Ros Altmann, who commented: “I am delighted that the government has recognised the injustice of the delay in implementing the new state pension system and am very pleased for the 85,000 women who will now be given a fairer chance of a better state pension.'
“The reason it was so indefensible to start the state pension reform in 2017” Altmann explains, “was that ministers had previously promised all women who had to accept a second increase in their state pension age, at very short notice, would at least be included in the new state pension in order to ensure they were compensated for delay in receiving it.”
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