Britons who have reached retirement age are being urged to increase their state pension income by taking advantage of a government offer that is due to be withdrawn on April 5th.
The scheme allows all Britons who missed out on the recent state pension introduced in 2016 to trade in a lump sum in exchange for a generous (index-linked) income for life. Any person who attained state pension age before 6th April 2016 has approximately two weeks to take advantage of the scheme which requires Class 3A national insurance as a pre qualification requirement.
According to Steve Webb, Former pension minister & Royal London policy director, retirement products working in a similar manner pay out two to three times higher than what annuities pay. Besides offering extra income, the scheme also offers a 50% payout to survivors when a pensioner dies.
In essence, a 65-year-old pensioner can trade in £8900 for £520 annually which would increase according to CPI inflation figures every year. The same pensioner would get just £195 annually or £347 after inflation adjustments if he/she bought an index-linked annuity.
The total cost of purchasing additional state pension under the top-up scheme depends on an individual’s age as well as the top-up amount. However, there is a maximum amount set at £25/week or £1,300/year. According to Mr. Webb, the scheme is attractive to individuals with a small pension/saving pot. The scheme is also attractive for women as well as individuals in good health since they are bound to live longer.
The scheme offers better value when compared with the annuity rates available today in the market. It’s a great way to boost a person’s recurrent income according to Mr. Webb. As a result, anyone who is eligible should consider taking advantage of the scheme before the April 5th deadline.