As you would expect, the state pension is included in many of the political parties’ manifestos.
UKIP intends to introduce a “state pension window” to give people the option to take their pension at 65, with an early receipt reduction. Meanwhile, the SNP proposes to conduct a review of the increase in the state pension age to 67.
The Green Party’s “Citizen’s Pension” would be paid “unconditionally” to all citizens. It would not be means tested or dependent on NICs and would be provided even if the individual continues to work after they retire. A single rate of £170 per week, and £300 per week for couples, has been proposed.
Triple lock guarantee
All but one of the main parties promise to preserve the triple lock guarantee post-election. This measure sees the basic state pension rise in line with average UK earnings, inflation or by 2.5%, whichever is the highest. This is with the exception of the Green Party which proposes the Citizen’s Pension as detailed above. The Liberal Democrats are committed to making the triple lock guarantee a permanent measure.
The main parties all propose measures which are said to protect pensioners. A summary of the main pledges include:
- Labour promises to reform the pensions market to ensure pensioners are not being exploited and to provide greater guidance for pensioners to avoid mis-selling.
- The Liberal Democrats intend to push ahead with implementing the new single tier pension due to be introduced in 2016, meaning whatever people save they will keep.
- The SNP and Conservatives support the implementation of a single tier pension.
- UKIP intends to criminalise cold calls to encourage people to cash in their pension pots and to double the budget for free pension advice.