chrismceleny's Blog

Indy ref- 100 days – 100 words – PENSIONS



In the current UK system the age at which you will receive your state pension is set to rise to 67. Can you imagine having to work until you are 67 until you receive your state pension?

UK government reforms will see pension ages equalised – that is the male and female age will be the same – at 65 by December 2018. The state pension age will then increase to 66 by October 2020, and the UK government also plans a further increase to 67 between 2026 and 2028. That’s a whopping increase from 60 to 67 years of age for women of working age today!

Shockingly under successive Westminster governments life expectancy is shorter in Scotland than other parts of the UK, the Scottish Government proposes that with a Yes vote an Independent Commission would review the proposed increase to 67. The likelihood is that a lower retirement age would be retained by an independent government to reflect lower life expectancy. That possibility will be lost without a Yes vote next year.

Of course many people are asking what about my pension will I still get the same as I get now? On independence, people living in Scotland will be entitled to the Scottish State Pension based on years of national insurance credits built up in the UK. From that point onwards, entitlement built up in Scotland will accrue to the Scottish State Pension. It is estimated that the basic state pensions will be at least £118.60 in 2016/17. The Scottish Government has guaranteed that this will then be uprated each year by a “triple lock” in the years after independence.

The UK single-tier pension is estimated to be worth £158.90 by 2016/17. The Scottish Single Tier Pension will be at least £160 per week (or match the UK rate if that is higher). It will also be uprated each year by a “triple lock”.

And if you’re wondering what a triple lock is, it’s not some WWE(F) manoeuvre it means pensions will increase by the highest of either: average earnings increases, CPI or 2.5%.

I don’t want to live in a country that makes me work until I drop. Only a yes vote will see us change this.