Pension freeze 'costing expats up to £8k a year'

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Half a million elderly people will miss out on the 3.1 percent rise because they live in a country without a reciprocal social security deal with the UK.

Their payments are frozen and fall in real terms year-on-year, despite having paid the same contributions.

The increase to a weekly rate of £141.85 for the Basic State Pension, and £185.15 for the New State Pension, will mean that a “frozen” pensioner, who has made the full contributions, will miss out on £7,919 if they retired in 1982. And they will lose £4,040 if they retired in 2012, £5,701 if they retired in 2002, rising to £6,812 if they retired in 1992.

John Duffy, chairman of the International Consortium of British Pensioners, said: “This outrageously cruel policy is excluding pensioners, many of whom spent their working lives in the UK, and leaving them to face poverty.” “Parliament’s all-party group on frozen British pensions has also warned that the policy is driving British pensioners overseas into destitution.”

All UK pensioners with national insurance contributions are entitled to a British state pension regardless of where they live.

But 492,000 are hurt by the Government’s frozen pensions policy. Ninety percent live in Commonwealth countries – many in overseas British territories such as the Falklands.

A spokesman for the Department of Work and Pensions said: “We continue to uprate state pensions overseas where there is a legal requirement to do so.”



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