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Is the state pension age in danger of going up again?

September 4, 2019
Employment Law

Like us, you might have noticed an eye-catching press release recently issued by the ‘think tank’, the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ). In it, they suggested that the state pension age, which is already in the process of increasing from 65 to 68, might have to rise further and faster.

So what are they proposing?

Iain Duncan Smith, on behalf of the CSJ, has suggested that rather than rising to 68 by 2046, the state pension age will need to rise to 75 by as early as 2035. Given the anger with which people have reacted to the present arrangements for increasing the state pension age, it’s difficult to imagine that these new proposals would prove a vote winner. However, Mr Duncan Smith claims that it is a necessary measure aimed at ensuring an appropriate balance between those in receipt of a state pension and those of working age. The CSJ also claims there may be other advantages to such an increase, including positive benefits for people’s mental and physical health. To be honest, we don’t suspect that this particular argument is going to be convincing anybody!

Is the government listening?

It’s worth bearing in mind that the CSJ is merely a ‘think tank’ and its pronouncements are not gospel. By the same token, as a former Work and Pensions Secretary, Mr Duncan Smith’s proposals could prove persuasive. However, for now, it seems unlikely that the government will be seeking to implement these changes. Amber Rudd, the present Work and Pensions Secretary swiftly tweeted to point out that the CSJ’s proposals are not government policy; she said that to suggest otherwise was “scaremongering”. She went on to say that: “The State Pension age is 68 which is fair, sustainable and affordable for all generations.”

Does this do enough to reassure you? Alternatively, do you think Mr Duncan Smith is right to raise the issue?

Need our help?

If you need advice on age-related issues such as retirement and its interaction with the state pension age, please get in touch.

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