State Pension: Expert outlines criteria to qualify
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The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has confirmed some benefit payments dates, including the state pension, will be different to the upcoming bank holiday. Next week, the country will enjoy a Spring bank holiday on Thursday, June 2 and a national holiday on Friday, June 3 to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Due to the bank holiday and Jubilee celebrations, the DWP will close its offices and phone lines over the period.
A consequence of this will be that people who are due to be paid their state pension on either of those dates will instead get their money on the first working day prior – June 1, 2022.
This date change often happens to take into account the impact of bank or national holidays.
In order to inform state pensioners of the pending changes, the DWP shared an update to those who are awaiting payments.
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The Government department stated: “On Thursday 2 and Friday June 3 offices and phone lines are closed.
“To make sure people receive their payments on a day when our offices are open, arrangements have been made to make some payments early.
“If the expected payment date is Thursday 2 or Friday June 3 benefits will be paid early on Wednesday June 1.”
Among the DWP benefits and HMRC tax credits which are set to be paid earlier than usual in June are:
Disability Living Allowance
Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
Child Tax Credit
Working Tax Credit
Employment Support Allowance
Recently, all benefit payments awarded by the DWP were increased by 3.1 percent, the same rate of Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation from September last year.
This has proven to be controversial as inflation in the UK has recently hit a 40-year high of nine percent as of last week.
As a result of this, recipients of the state pension will not see their payment rise at the same rate as the increase in the cost of living.
Steven Cameron, a pensions director at Aegon, noted that older Britons are more likely to be at risk from the threat of inflation.
Mr Cameron explained: “One particularly vulnerable group is pensioners who’ve seen their state pension increase by just 3.1 percent in April, representing a 5.9 percent loss in their purchasing power with inflation currently at nine percent.”
He also noted that pensioners will not have the luxury of a savings account with a favourable interest rate in light of these hikes to inflation.
“Those hoping to supplement retirement incomes from interest on cash savings face even greater challenges,” Mr Cameron added.
“A savings account paying at the base rate level of one percent is losing eight percent in real terms with inflation at nine percent.”
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