State pension payments will increase each year by the higher of 2.5% inflation figures or average incomes and these measures are taken throughout the year. For the current year inflation and income growth have been, understandably, low, and as such, it has been confirmed that payments will increase by 2.5% from April 2021.
“Without this legislation, this would not be possible because the drop in data on average earnings means that the Secretary of State would not have the option of increasing those rates. This bill gives it that capacity.
Commenting on the bill, Thérèse Coffey said: “The government has worked hard to protect all age groups during the pandemic, by strengthening the social safety net, introducing leave and income protection schemes, as well as supporting those who have lost their jobs at work.
“So it’s only right that we also ensure that retirees can see their incomes protected as we build back better.
“In these difficult times, I want to reassure retirees about their financial health. “
Applications for pension credit can be made up to four months before reaching the statutory retirement age.
They can also be backdated up to three months, meaning that up to three months of payments could arrive at a time for some claimants.
The pension credit can be claimed online, by phone or by mail and the following information will be required:
- A national insurance number
- Information on income, savings and investments
- bank account details