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State pension letter

(113 Posts)
Poppyred Fri 26-Mar-21 14:01:26

To expect a letter telling me about my state pension which I am due shortly. (i hope!)

My friend whom has never worked has had hers telling her how much she is getting and when. We share the same birthday and I have worked 40 years plus! ??

Shinamae Sat 27-Mar-21 19:20:15

Marydoll

*Shinamae*, a few years ago, I could no longer get into my Gateway account, so I made a new one. No problems ever since.
Access to it has saved me a considerable number of phone calls, including organising a tax rebate.

Ok Marydoll,thank you....?

Sundaze Sat 27-Mar-21 19:31:04

Shinamae, I phoned Future Pensions (0191 218 3600) to determine the cost of paying additional voluntary Class 3 NI contributions, as I will have a shortfall in my state pension when I eventually claim it.
They're very helpful, and can send you a pension forecast in the post too.

If you decide that it's worth while making the additional payment(s), you then ring HMRC (0300 200 3500).
They will give you details of how to make the payment and a reference number to quote when making the bank transfer.

Hope this helps.

Shinamae Sat 27-Mar-21 19:59:20

Sundaze

*Shinamae*, I phoned Future Pensions (0191 218 3600) to determine the cost of paying additional voluntary Class 3 NI contributions, as I will have a shortfall in my state pension when I eventually claim it.
They're very helpful, and can send you a pension forecast in the post too.

If you decide that it's worth while making the additional payment(s), you then ring HMRC (0300 200 3500).
They will give you details of how to make the payment and a reference number to quote when making the bank transfer.

Hope this helps.

Ahhhh.... sorry I probably haven’t been very clear, I already get my pension I am just questioning the amount......?

Sundaze Sat 27-Mar-21 20:13:54

No problem Shinamae, hopefully the information will be of help to someone smile

Shinamae Sat 27-Mar-21 20:55:53

Sundaze

No problem Shinamae, hopefully the information will be of help to someone smile

I think I will ring those numbers anyway (they might even pick up the damn phone!!)who knows they might be able to put me through to somebody you can actually help me so thank you Sundaze...?

Chakotay Tue 30-Mar-21 08:02:38

Shinamae

Sundaze

Shinamae, I phoned Future Pensions (0191 218 3600) to determine the cost of paying additional voluntary Class 3 NI contributions, as I will have a shortfall in my state pension when I eventually claim it.
They're very helpful, and can send you a pension forecast in the post too.

If you decide that it's worth while making the additional payment(s), you then ring HMRC (0300 200 3500).
They will give you details of how to make the payment and a reference number to quote when making the bank transfer.

Hope this helps.

Ahhhh.... sorry I probably haven’t been very clear, I already get my pension I am just questioning the amount......?

The new state pension rules are quite complicated now and the amount does not necessarily equate to the years a person paid in, as I said up post you get a starting amount, if your starting amount is more than the current basic you will get that plus any protected payments after that your NICs /Credits will not increase your pension, if your starting amount is less then the basic then your NICs/Credits will increase your pension until you reach the basic or reach pension age which ever comes sooner, so if you were expecting a pension based on say 50 years of NICs that may not be the case, hope you get it sorted but don't be disappointed if you find your amount is correct

Sarnia Tue 30-Mar-21 08:09:58

According to money expert, Martin Lewis, the Pension Service is struggling. Pandemic aside, they are having to review thousands of pensions for women who do not receive a full State pension. Mine is under review and when I phoned last week a very helpful lady said they are snowed under with work and have been told not to give a timescale on when queries etc will be dealt with.

Maggiemaybe Tue 30-Mar-21 11:01:39

HMRC is struggling too, and as they work closely together it’s leading to big delays. I made a voluntary contribution 3 weeks ago to buy two incomplete years. My Gateway account hasn’t been updated or my pension uplifted, so I rang to make sure everything was okay. I got no further than the automated message, which says in effect that payments take up to 10 weeks to process, so go away and come back later if it hasn’t already been that long.

It’s a bit of a worry though, when several hundred pounds whoosh out of your account and you get no confirmation that it’s gone to the right account.

Jaxjacky Tue 30-Mar-21 12:24:59

I’ve just spent 40minutes waiting for the phone to be answered, by a person who basically just took my number for someone else to call me back. My pension date was March 1st, I had an email acknowledging my claim on 10th November 2020, not heard a peep, I was expecting a letter telling me which day of the week and date of commencement. I know how much to expect as I have a Gateway account, it’s annoying.

Shandy57 Tue 30-Mar-21 13:16:55

I've bitten the bullet and paid for three years 2016, 2017, and 2018. The cost of these years will be increased on 5 April 2021. My pension in 2023 will now be £165 pw, and I'm going to leave it at that. Now interest rates are negligible, I need to conserve my house sale funds for the maintenance and repairs I have to do here.

It's a real faff so set aside time if you are going to do it.

I waited 40 minutes for Future Pensions and they explained I would benefit at £5 per week per year I paid from 2016. If I paid all five years to date I'd receive the full state pension of £175.60 (?), a cost of £3,920.

I was told to ring HMRC NI office to get the bank details and a NI reference, another 40 minutes holding on. Once I'd discussed the costs and got my reference, I went to my on line banking and paid. I then had to ring the NI office back - another 30 minutes holding - to tell them which years to allocate this payment to. It will take six to ten weeks to update the forecast.

I'm glad it's done. Now to find out how to get new patio doors!

Maggiemaybe Tue 30-Mar-21 17:09:56

At least you know it’s sorted now, Shandy. It’ll be a worry off your mind.

It’s interesting that you had to ring the NI office back to confirm the years you’re paying for. I wasn’t told to do that, though I did discuss it with someone at HMRC when they gave me the bank details. hmm

Guess who’ll be hanging on that telephone line tomorrow!

Sundaze Tue 30-Mar-21 18:46:30

I've previously purchased additional voluntary Class 3 contributions as I will have a shortfall on my state pension.

I've given it a while for my pension forecast to update (which it didn't), then phoned HMRC to check they'd received my payments.

Both times my payments were sat in presumably a suspense account, awaiting allocation.
The person I spoke with allocated my payments there and then, and I was able immediately to see my updated forecast.

This was pre covid, so I guess everything is taking longer.

Shandy57 Tue 30-Mar-21 19:38:45

I wasn't happy with the people I spoke to at NI office Sundaze, when I rang to say I'd paid a lump sum and wanted to 'allocate' my years she said 'are you sure' - which threw me. They can't see our information which seems peculiar, obviously departments don't liaise.

I said I'd spoken to Future Pensions and they had informed me purchasing years from 2016 would increase my pension. I doubted myself initially, luckily I'd written it down. Any years purchased 2016 onwards will increase the pension by £5 per week. 20-21 purchase price is staying the same until 2022, I might buy one more year next March if I can save the money.

Sundaze Tue 30-Mar-21 20:26:28

Hi Shandy, it's all a bit confusing isn't it?

I'm looking to make further voluntary contributions before my state pension becomes payable.
As you say, with interest rates being so poor at the moment, it seems a good investment....on the premise of living long enough to benefit from it!

Shandy57 Tue 30-Mar-21 23:07:36

My friend thinks I'm daft to have done it, she said to buy Premium Bonds.

Callistemon Tue 30-Mar-21 23:20:55

I wish I'd done it, Shandy.

Doodledog Wed 31-Mar-21 11:00:48

I left full time work aged 58, and have been paying VCs quarterly since then. It costs roughly £200 every 3 months. I have a Gateway account, and can see each year how much my pension has grown. They credit the payments in April, and show you two bars - one with the maximum (predicted) pension in the year you'll retire, and the other with what you would get if you retired then on the contributions you have paid up to now. I can see that mine are equalising.

It is annoying, as I have over 40 years of contributions, but because of being opted out I had a shortfall, when a friend of mine who has never worked will get a full pension based on state credits made when her children were young, a few voluntary contributions and the new grandparent credits. It all seems so very unfair, but there is nothing I can do about that except continue to pay.

I do some consultancy work on a regular but ad hoc basis, and because I am still under State Pension age I pay NI on my earnings - I usually get paid in two months of the year. The voluntary contributions don't get reduced accordingly, though. There seems to be a flat rate, regardless of other payments.

It is good to watch the differential between the two bars decreasing though, and paying this way is psychologically easier than shelling out thousands of pounds in one go.

Ailidh Wed 31-Mar-21 16:15:57

I'm grateful to have rediscovered this thread today. Thank you!

I got my confirmed pension amount yesterday, and honestly didn't look at the numbers that closely, as I have 40 years in.

I looked today, and it's £22 pw short ?

I've been into hmrc to look at my n.i., and I guess I could make up contributions for 2015-2016, as I retired early on health grounds in the 2014-2015 tax year.

I cannot work out whether paying for that year would make a significant difference, how much contributions are, and how to be sure I'm doing the right thing ?

The letter says additional contributions can be made up until 2013, so I'm setting it aside until after Easter.....?

Artaylar Wed 31-Mar-21 16:34:53

My state retirement pension forecast is currently £28 pw short of the full pension.

I've got just over 7 years to go before I reach my state retirement age of 67. I havent worked for the past 2 years and the chances are I will not find another job before 67.

I'm very much in 2 minds about paying voluntary Class 3 NI contributions, which at the current time are £795.60 per year. Given that this £795.60 would buy me one year's full NI that would increase my pension by around £5 pw, I'm just wondering about the risks of not living long enough to break even, particularly if I opted to buy more than one years full NI.

So, lets say I opted to buy 3 years at a total of just over £2,386, I would have to live until 76 before breaking even. A difficult call and one that I'm still mulling over.

Callistemon Wed 31-Mar-21 16:43:09

Artaylar if you are claiming any kind of benefit eg Jobseeker's Allowance, NI credits should be paid on your behalf.

Artaylar Wed 31-Mar-21 16:59:14

Thanks so much for that Calliestemon

No, I'm not claiming any sort of benefits.

Thanks again for the adviceflowers

M0nica Wed 31-Mar-21 17:01:23

Artaylar A woman who is now aged 60 has a life expectancy of 25 years, that is you can reasonably expect to see your 85th birthday

Obviously I do not know whether you have any medical problems that may limit your life, nor can I see forward to check whether you will fall under a bus in 10 years time, but looking at the statistics, your chances of living beyond the age of 76 are pretty good.

Fleur20 Wed 31-Mar-21 17:13:13

Would the £5 per week increase being discussed be ‘inflated’ by any % rise in State Pension in future years? Thus being better value for the initial lump sum you pay... or is my maths awry??

Artaylar Wed 31-Mar-21 17:14:20

Thanks for that M0nica that's very reassuring.smile

Genes wise its looking good - my mother and father passed away 80 and 87 respectively.

Lifestye wise = another matter; smoker and drink too much wine than is good for me as well.

Its funny, I've got a close friend, same age as me, who had been planning all her finances on the premise that she will not see 70, and I've told her more than once that she should think again as she could end up reaching 90 or more.

I may need to take my own counsel on this one.wink

Artaylar Wed 31-Mar-21 17:17:17

Fleur20

Would the £5 per week increase being discussed be ‘inflated’ by any % rise in State Pension in future years? Thus being better value for the initial lump sum you pay... or is my maths awry??

I think it probably would Fleur20 so that's another thing to factor in.