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State pensioners miss out on £470million in payments for 'key reason' – check now


State pensioners missed out on £470million through underpayments over the past financial year.

Helen Morrissey, head of retirement analysis at Hargreaves Lansdown, urged pensioners that “it pays to check” if you have missed out on cash.

She said: “The key reason behind errors in state pension payments is inaccuracies around National Insurance records.

“There have been high profile cases of groups who have not received the uplifts they were entitled to under the basic state pension system when their partners died for instance.

“However, even if you aren’t in this position, it shows the importance of getting a state pension record and checking that the information held for you is correct.

“Taking the time to do this now could save yourself a nasty shock when it comes to retirement.”

The latest DWP figures also showed there was £80million in Pension Credit underpayments through “unfulfilled eligibility.

Ms Morrissey explained: “When we say unfulfilled eligibility this means the amount you would have got if DWP had all the relevant information.

“Much is made of the number of people who aren’t claiming Pension Credit when they should be, but we also need to look at whether those who do receive it are getting the correct amount.

“For instance, if your savings reduce you could be entitled to more money, so it’s vital to keep DWP informed of any changes to your circumstances.”

State pension payments increased 8.5 percent from April with the full new state pension now paying £221.20 a week.

The large payment increase raised the question of the future of the triple lock metric and how the state pension will be funded.

Financial journalist Martin Lewis said on his podcast recently of the triple lock: “That could certainly change and the value of the state pension could change, all of that could change the equation.”

The podcast was themed around how to buy National Insurance contributions towards the state pension.

Mr Lewis said he thinks this system will stay the same for now. He commented: “I think it is quite unlikely that if you are buying a year because you need a year, it is pretty unlikely that that won’t be very lucrative for you in the long run.

“As long as you live long enough to claim the state pension, once you start claiming it.

“I think that would be a huge, massive, monumental, systemic change. I can’t promise that won’t happen but I think it’s unlikely.”

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