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'Rethink' on pension reform plans
It is claimed that pension reforms are to be watered down
Plans for a major overhaul of pensions reportedly face being watered down after David Cameron demanded a rethink to stave off a potential backlash from older voters.
The Prime Minister has called for reforms introducing a flat-rate £140 payment rate to be re-examined, according to the Financial Times.
Under the planned changes higher earners will be stopped from making additional contributions to increase their pension pot and those already claiming the payments will not be eligible for the new rate.
In an attempt to head off a repeat of the "granny tax" row sparked by budget changes that lowered pensioners' personal allowance rates, the PM wants the plans, due in autumn, to be more consultative, according to the FT.
"The proposals are not off the table but the white paper will probably look more 'green' than white," referring to the traditional colour of the different stages of government policy papers, a source told the newspaper.
A DWP spokesman said: "As announced in the Queen's Speech the Government is committed to reforming the state pension system.
"A white paper will be published this year which will outline the key features of a single-tier pension system. Making the system simpler and fairer."
In June, Mr Cameron said there would be a "straightforward flat rate of around £140 a week" instead of a complicated pension system.
He added: "The act of simplification is incredibly important, it's going to pull thousands out of means testing, it's going to help make saving pay. This quite simply doing the right thing by those who have done the right thing all their lives and I'm proud that we are the Government taking this forward."
It comes as a report by the RSA calls for employers to switch to "collective" defined contribution pension schemes that allow for a sharing of risk instead of traditional schemes. The move would boost pensioner private pension incomes by nearly 40%, the think tank said.
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Well, as from 2015, as was sneaked out during the olympics, George Osborne is reducing my gold plated armed forces pension from £10 a week to £3.30 a week.
Luckily I did not serve in the reserves as I would have had to wait at least an extra 5 years for my reduced pension as well.
When will the MPs take a hit on their pensions?
All these Tories ever do is tinker, it doesn't actually change things for the better, always looking for ways to pay less, I, along with so many lost much of my company pension because the Thatcher Government allowed changes in pension rules & companies raided pension funds once again proving Tories only look after their own.
It would make sense to pay a decent state pension in line with some of the EU, many of us now live on the bread line, last winter they took away £50 of our heating allowance at the same time allowing the greedy power companies to increase prices, many now have a choice, heat or eat & still the price of fuel is allowed to rise unchecked. It would not surprise me if the Tories reduced the heating allowance even further.
Be interesting to see how this pans out.
Right now Guaranteed Pension Credit gives a flat rate of £142.70 for a single person or £217.90 for a couple. The eligible ages are slowly shifting but under the current rules a lot of men born in the early 1950s who haven't actually reached 65 yet qualify for these amounts. When you add to those payments the rest of the package, which can include full housing and council tax benefits, it makes a potentially good early retirement option and one that is being pushed by Job Centres to take older claimants off the books.
If they go ahead with these proposed changes I can see a significant gap developing in the payments system with people who are currently receiving, or would be eligible for, Pension Credits suddenly finding they are not entitled to anything. Will they then be expected to live on whatever savings they have? I think this is IDS again talking complete nonsense, he doesn't understand the system, he certainly doesn't understand the problems and really is ill-qualified for his current job.
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