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Guide to the state pension

Guide to the state pension

What does the State Pension look like? What’s it worth? How do I qualify for this pension?

State pension before 6th April 2016

A two-tier scheme, made up of the basic State Pension and, if you’ve been paying into it, an Additional State Pension.


Tier 1: The full basic State Pension. The maximum you can get a week is £119.30.
From 06/04/2017 this will have increased to £122.30 per week.

You need to have been paying National Insurance (NI) contributions for at least 10 years to get anything, and you’ll need 30 qualifying years to get the full amount.

Tier 2: The Additional State Pension is not a fixed amount and is dependent on a number of things such as your earnings. It will be paid with your basic State Pension and increases each year with inflation.

The Additional State Pension is an extra amount of money you could get with your basic State Pension. There’s no fixed amount as it’s based on your National Insurance contributions. How much you get will depend on how much you earn and whether you’ve claimed certain benefits.

New state pension from 6th April 2016

A new single-tier scheme will be introduced to replace the current scheme


The full new State Pension will be £155.65 per week. The amount you get can be higher or lower depending on your national insurance record. It will only be higher if you have over a certain amount of Additional State Pension.
From 06/04/2017 this £155.65 per week will have increased to £159.55 per week.

You still need 10 years of National Insurance (NI) contributions to get anything, but will need 35 qualifying years to get the full amount.

When do I get the State Pension?

You become eligible for the State Pension when you reach the State Pension age. However, you can defer taking your pension until a later date.


How to apply for the State Pension

Get a personal estimate or statement

What else do I need to consider?

Will the State Pension alone give you the retirement income you’re hoping for? If not, it might be time to think about securing a more comfortable retirement by either joining your company’s pension scheme or making your own arrangements. Whatever you decide to do, we recommend that you obtain free and impartial guidance from Pension Wise, a pension guidance service which has been introduced by the Government, or speak to a financial adviser before you make any decisions about your pension savings.

Need guidance or advice?

Free and impartial pension guidance service and information on obtaining financial advice

Request your retirement pack

For information on accessing your pension funds, request your personal retirement pack

Contact us

Find contact details, information about your policy or make changes online

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