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Cutting state pension payments.

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Cutting state pension payments.

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Over 50s Money Saving
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lilac_ladylilac_lady Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Over 50s Money Saving
Can the government legally reduce state pension payments (and other benefits) if things get worse economically?
" The greatest wealth is to live content with little."

Plato


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  • The state pension is a set amount and, at present, if you've paid enough NI contributions, you're entitled to it. It's not a benefit, means tested, as such. If things get really bad economically, then whichever government is in power could, in theory, introduce any measure it likes to cope with that - reducing pensions, cancelling benefits, anything it thinks it can get away with. Wouldn't lose sleep about it though - if things get that bad, we're better off dead anyway.
  • dzug1dzug1 Forumite
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    The government makes the laws - it can do what it wants and legislate that it's legal.

    In practice there are constraints of course - EU law, getting MPs to vote for it, fear of riots, etc.
  • BigglesBiggles Forumite
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    dzug1 wrote: »
    In practice there are constraints of course - EU law, getting MPs to vote for it, fear of riots, etc.
    For pensions, fear of riots must be the key.

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  • edited 30 December 2009 at 3:23PM
    ceridwenceridwen
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    edited 30 December 2009 at 3:23PM
    dzug1 wrote: »
    The government makes the laws - it can do what it wants and legislate that it's legal.

    In practice there are constraints of course - EU law, getting MPs to vote for it, fear of riots, etc.

    I've wondered whether they might "try that lark":mad:. I think the above post is the crux of the matter though - speaking as one of the people who would be out rioting on the streets about it myself if it came to it - and nope I'm not joking about that - I would certainly be taking action:D

    I think that is what boils down to in the event - the Government weighing up just what percentage of the population would have no qualms whatsoever about what they did to retaliate if they try anything like that(short of violence against people of course I hasten to add). So - lets hope its a reasonable percentage that wouldnt just sit there and moan.

    We've all read enough by now about JUST how much of our money has been handed over to the bankers after all....
  • lilac_lady wrote: »
    Can the government legally reduce state pension payments (and other benefits) if things get worse economically?

    Sure, why not? It's hardly uncommon practice in the world - Poland has just recently given part of the compulsory private pension (don't ask me to explain...it barely makes sense for us!) into the public pension fund - because the public fund has a massive hole.

    It wouldn't actually surprise me if the UK had to cut pensions - as I recall, the UK has spent tomorrow's pensions on today's pensioners.

    It's always struck me as odd that the UK system is a set amount - the Polish system is based entirely upon how much money you paid in during your working life, with a tiny guaranteed amount.
    From Poland...with love.

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  • seven-day-weekendseven-day-weekend Forumite
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    Sure, why not? It's hardly uncommon practice in the world - Poland has just recently given part of the compulsory private pension (don't ask me to explain...it barely makes sense for us!) into the public pension fund - because the public fund has a massive hole.

    It wouldn't actually surprise me if the UK had to cut pensions - as I recall, the UK has spent tomorrow's pensions on today's pensioners.

    It's always struck me as odd that the UK system is a set amount - the Polish system is based entirely upon how much money you paid in during your working life, with a tiny guaranteed amount.


    So is the UK one : the full basic Pension is £95 a week if you have paid a full amount of NI. You may get more than that if you have S2P (an earnings-related part), or you may get less than a full Pension if you have not paid enough NI.

    The difference is, I think, is that the Basic State Pension is made up to £130 a week for a single Pensioner, or £200 for a couple, by Pension Credit if their total income from all sources is below these amounts. You get this even if you have paid no NI at all.

    I do not think the Governmemt will reduce Pensions.
    (AKA HRH_MUngo)
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  • lilac_ladylilac_lady Forumite
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    I sometimes listen to Radio RTE1 from southern Ireland and I'm sure that I heard that the State had cut pensions there. Does anyone know if that's happened?
    " The greatest wealth is to live content with little."

    Plato


  • I think they have indeed made cuts in the Irish state pension since the 'celtic tiger' collapsed in a big way.
  • If there was such a suggestion here in the UK I do think there would be a huge reaction - don't anybody forget that the generation taking its pensions now is the very same generation that is used to taking to the streets in demonstration.
  • seven-day-weekendseven-day-weekend Forumite
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    Good point chesky.

    I do not think the basic Pension will be reduced, but any means-tested additions could be reduced or withdrawn. This is why I think it is unwise to depend upon means-tested Benefits rather than make your own provision if you have the choice. They can be easily withdrawn at any time.
    (AKA HRH_MUngo)
    Member #10 of £2 savers club
    Imagine someone holding forth on biology whose only knowledge of the subject is the Book of British Birds, and you have a rough idea of what it feels like to read Richard Dawkins on theology: Terry Eagleton
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