State Pensions are based on National Insurance (NI) contributions and the amount you get will depend on how much you have paid in. State pensions are not easy to understand and here we only cover the basics. To help you, we have included plenty of pointers so you know where you can find more information.
You've probably heard that some drastic changes have been made to State pensions for people who reach their State Pension age on or after 6 April 2016. These changes aim to make the system fairer and should be easier to understand. The table below summarises the main characteristics of the old and new state pensions:
|Old state pension||New state pension|
|State pension age|
Men: age 65
Women: age 60 before 6 April 2010. It then increased gradually from age 60 at 6 April 2010 to age 65 at 6 December 2018.
You can claim the Old state pension if you are:
Men: age 65 prior to 6 December 2018. It is increasing gradually to age 66 between 6 December 2018 and 6 October 2020. It will then be increasing to age 67 by 2028 and to age 68 by 2046.
Women: age 65 at 6 December 2018. It is increasing gradually to age 66 between 6 December 2018 and 6 October 2020. It will then be increasing to age 67 by 2028 and to age 68 by 2046
Prior to 6 April 2018 the State Pension Age for women increased gradually from age 60 at 6 April 2010 to age 65 at 6 December 2018.
|What do you get?||Basic State Pension (BSP) plus some Additional State Pension (ASP)||Flat rate payment|
|How much is it?||Maximum of £137.60 (BSP) plus up to around £176 (ASP) per week. The actual amount will depend on your NI record||Maximum of £179.60 per week plus any 'protected payments'. The actual amount will depend on your NI record|
|How many years of NI contributions do I need for the full pension?||30||35|
Do I need a minimum number of NI years to qualify?
|No||Yes - minimum of 10 years|
We've explained the main changes in more detail below but you can also find out more information here.