An amendment in the Pensions Bill made during last week’s budget has left millions of women in their mid-50s at risk of being seriously worse off due to changes proposed for the State Pension.
A counter amendment, aimed at protecting these women was narrowly defeated in the house of Lords last week, with just one last hope for these women being a final reading in Commons in July.
The bill is designed to speed up the process of equalling the pension age for men and women, which will be 65 by 2018, and then 66 by 2020.
This is two years earlier than they had originally planned, and directly affects women currently aged 56 and 57.
The defeat in the House of Lords, which saw the bill defeated 226 to 214, will give women hope that lobbying MPs could still make the difference needed to halt the amendment being made law.
The changes will now mean that those women aged 56 and 57 will have to wait an extra two years before reaching the state pension age, and will less time than anyone else to plan savings or an alternative solution.
One solution for these women could be pension release, which would enable them to receive a lump sum from their pension fund to help them with those two years, but would severely affect the amount they would receive in the rest of their retirement.
Unfortunately for those who can’t work, that could be their only option. Pension Release Information Here
Age UK’s director Michelle Mitchell claimed that up to 2.6 million women would be denied the chance to adequately plan for their retirement.
‘We are encouraged by the strong support shown in the House of Lords to halt the speeding up of the State pension age rise and will be stepping up our campaign to fight these proposals,’ she added.
‘With more people joining our campaign to give women a fairer pensions deal, it’s clear there is growing opposition to the Government’s plans.
‘If given the green light, these changes will deny millions of people the chance to plan properly for their retirement and will condemn the poorest to even more hardship. We urge the Government to reconsider its plans.’