The Pension Service - benefits for people of State Pension age

The Pension Service - benefits for people of State Pension age

The Pension Service advises people who have reached State Pension age about their eligibility to claim benefits, and can answer queries about Pensions and Pension Credit. The Pension Service will:


  • Work out how much State Pension, New State Pension, and Pension Credit, Additional State Pension you are entitled to.
  • Talk to you in a place that is convenient for you or in the comfort of your own home if your business cannot be dealt with over the telephone.
  • Pay your entitlements to you, and answer questions over the phone and by post and email.
  • Tell you how to claim other pension–related entitlements and services.
  • Work with other local organisations to deliver pension-related services.


Basic State Pension


Your eligibility to claim the State Pension depends on your National Insurance contributions. To receive the full basic state pension, you need to have been born before 6th April 1950 if you are a man, or 6th April 1953 if you are a woman.

You also need to have made full contributions for 30 years, or have paid voluntary contributions or received credits for the years that you may not have been able to make full contributions. If you do not have enough contributions your state pension is likely to be less that £125.95 per week (2018/19) so it is worth trying to make voluntary contributions if you can, or finding out if you are entitled to any contribution credits for your gap years.

If you are married or in a civil partnership but not eligible for the state pension, or you are not getting the full amount you may be able to claim a “top up” amount of £75.50 per week based on your spouse’s national insurance contributions.

For further details about eligibility go to



Pension Credit


Pension Credit is a two-part benefit designed to help top up your pension income if its below £163 (single people), £248.80 (couples) per week. The benefit comes as:


  • Guaranteed Credit – tops up your weekly income to £163
  • Savings Credit - extra credit for people who have saved some money towards retirement, such as a small private pension.


You are not eligible for savings credit if you have retired after April 2016. For more information go to .



Additional State Pension


Additional State Pension is a benefit available to men born before 6th April 1951, and women born before 6th April 1953 on top of your basic pension.  You will receive this benefit automatically if you are eligible, unless you were contracted out during your working life. To claim Additional State Pension, you must have retired before 6th April 2016. Further information is available from .


New State Pension


New State Pension is available to people born after April 1951 (men) or April 1953 (women).  The full new state pension is worth up to £164.35 per week (2018/19), and is dependent on your National Insurance contributions.

You may receive a higher pension if you have:


  • Have over a certain amount of Additional State Pension
  • Have deferred receiving your State Pension


You will still get the New State Pension if you also have personal or work based pensions, and you may also have to pay tax on your State Pension if your income goes above the tax limits. Further information available from .


Report any change of circumstances


If your circumstances change, your pension or benefits may be affected. You need to report any changes in your circumstances:


  • Personal Information – your name or marital status/civil partnership, change in address, your status (as you become disabled or are no longer disabled), change in work status (voluntary or paid work), death of a partner or spouse, or a partner or spouse moves in with you or moves away (even if they are/were not financially dependent on you).


  • Living Circumstances – you move home, you or the person you claim for goes into hospital, goes into custody serving a court imposed sentence, or goes into residential care or a nursing home


  • Financial situation – you or someone you claim for starts receiving another benefit, stops or returns to work, changes to your savings or investment status, changes to your occupational pension. Pension Credit is excluded from these criteria except claiming other benefits.


Contact the Pension Service Helpline on 0800 731 0469, text 0800 169 0133 for any further information concerning pensions, inform about change of circumstances, or to check your eligibility to claim. They are open Monday – Friday 8am 6pm.


Future Pension Centre


Contact the Future Pension Centre to obtain a forecast of your State Pension.


If you are a woman born before 6th April 1953 or a man born before 6th April 1951 to enable you to get a forecast the following conditions apply:


  • You are more than 30 days away from your State Pension age
  • You have not already reached your State Pension age


Your pension is based on your National Insurance (NI) contributions. A forecast will give you an estimate of your basic and additional State Pension.  When contacting the Future Pension Centre, you will need to supply the following information:


  • Your NI number (and that of your late or former spouse or civil partner, if you are bereaved, divorced or have had your civil partnership dissolved).
  • Details of the types of NI contributions you are paying (this will depend on whether you are employed or self-employed).
  • Details of any marriages, civil partnerships (including marriages annulled or civil partnerships dissolved).
  • Details of anytime you have spent working outside the UK.
  • Details of your current salary if you are paid by an employer (rather than self – employed).

If you are a woman born on or after 6th April 1953 or a man born on or after 6th April 1951 you will need to supply details of:


  • Your full name, date of birth and current address
  • Your NI number
  • Details of any time you have spent working outside the UK


To obtain a State Pension forecast statement by telephone contact: 


Future Pension Centre


Tel: 0800 731 0175

Calling from outside UK: +44 (0)191 218 3600

Opening hours: Monday – Friday 8am – 6pm.


To obtain State Pension Statement forecast by post you will need to download the forms from:   then send the completed form to:


Future Pension Centre


The Pension Service 9

Mail Handling Site A


WV98 1LU


International Pension Centre


The International Pension Centre deals with State Pension and other benefits for those living abroad and those who have lived or worked in other countries that either:


  • Apply the European Community (EC) rules on Social Security
  • Have a reciprocal Social Security Agreement with the UK


The International Pension Centre need to be informed if there is any change in your personal circumstances or details such as a new address, bank account, or status.  These changes must be made by telephone or in writing. You cannot make these changes by email as this route is not secure.  Electronic copies of forms or documents including scanned copies will not be accepted. Please send either originals or certified copies of any relevant documents to:


International Pension Centre


Pension Service 11

Mail Handling Site A


WV98 1LW

Tel: +44 (0) 191 218 7777

Text phone for the hard of hearing: +44 191 218 7280


Opening hours: Monday – Friday 8am – 8pm. For further information about pensions or any other benefit that you may be claiming while living abroad go online at .


Pension Tracing Service


The Pension Service 9

Mail Handling Site A


WV98 1LU

Tel: 0800 731 0193

From outside UK: +44 (0) 191 215 4491

Textphone: 0800 731 0176


Phone lines open Monday – Friday 8am – 6pm


This service can help you find a lost pension scheme, use this service to find contact details for:


  • Your own workplace or personal pension scheme


  • Someone else’s scheme if you have their permission


You will need the name of an employer or pension provider to use this service. The service will not be able to tell you whether you have a pension or its value.



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