State Pension for married couples: How much is State Pension for married couples?
The rules on state pensions last changed in April 2016 for men born on or after April 6, 1951 and women born on or after April 6, 1953. If you reached the retirement age before this, then the new rules do not apply to you. The earliest you can get a state pension is when you reach the required age, which is currently 66.
In 2020/21, the full level of the new State Pension is £175.20 a week, coming in at £9,110.40 a year, a rise of 3.9 percent on last year.
However, you may get more or less than this depending on your individual contributions.
You only qualify for a full State Pension once you have 35 years’ worth of National Insurance contributions, and to get any State Pension at all, you need to have made at least ten years of National Insurance contributions.
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You can make NI contributions if:
- you were working and paid National Insurance contributions
- you were getting National Insurance credits for example if you were unemployed, ill or a parent or carer
- you were paying voluntary National Insurance contributions
These do not need to be ten consecutive years, so if you have taken time off to look after children or take a career break, this will not affect your pension.
The state pension age increase to 68 is now being implemented from 2037, rather than 2044 as previously planned.
The State Pension increases year on year, depending on either average percentage growth of wages in Great Britain, or the percentage growth in prices in the UK as measured by the Consumer Prices Index, or 2.5 percent, whichever is highest.
This is also known as the triple lock system, and it ensures the pension always rises.
From April 6 this year, the State Pension rose by 3.9 percent, working out at an extra £6 per week in your pocket.
You must actively claim your state pension – it is not automatically provided to you.
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Is there a State Pension for married couples?
There is no such thing as a State Pension that is specifically for married couples.
Previously, many women had gaps in their National Insurance record or had paid the specially reduced ‘Married Woman’s Stamp’ or ‘Small Stamp’, meaning they would reach pension age with limited pension entitlement in their own right.
In recognition of this fact, a married woman had the option to claim a pension at 60 percent of the full basic state pension rate based on her husband’s record of National Insurance Contributions.
This could be claimed when her husband reached state pension age.
This has now been abolished, with both partners in a couple being responsible for their own pension contributions, and each getting an individual sum whenever their respective pensions are paid out.
This system is fairer for widows and divorced women, as their income is no longer dependent on their husband.
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