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'What is a fair state pension?' poll discussion

edited 26 October 2010 at 11:45AM in Money Saving Polls
21 replies 3.7K views
Former_MSE_LawrenceFormer_MSE_Lawrence Former MSE
975 Posts
edited 26 October 2010 at 11:45AM in Money Saving Polls
What is a fair state pension?

It's rumoured the govt's considering boosting the state pension to a flat £140 per week from the current £97.65, with means testing topping it up to £132.60 for some.

What do you think is a fair level for the state pension is? Remember higher amounts usually necessitate higher taxes.

I get a pension: Scrap it
I get a pension: £80 per week - £4,160 per year
I get a pension: £97.65 per week - £5,080 per year (current amount)
I get a pension: £120 per week - £6,240 per year
I get a pension: £140 per week - £7,280 per year (suggested new amount)
I get a pension: £180 per week - £9,360 per year
I get a pension: £250 per week - £13,000 per year
I get a pension: £490 per week - £25,500 per year (avg UK PAYE salary)

I’m not a pensioner: Scrap it
I’m not a pensioner: £80 per week - £4,160 per year
I’m not a pensioner: £97.65 per week - £5,080 per year (current amount)
I'm not a pensioner: £120 per week - £6,240 per year
I’m not a pensioner: £140 per week - £7,280 per year (suggested new amount)
I’m not a pensioner: £180 per week - £9,360 per year
I’m not a pensioner: £250 per week - £13,000 per year
I’m not a pensioner: £490 per week - £25,500 per year (avg UK PAYE salary)

Please vote here, or click 'post reply' to discuss below. Thanks :)

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Replies

  • stevemcolstevemcol Forumite
    1.7K Posts
    I think it should be equivalent to legal minimum wage (approx 11K?) but not paid at all if in receipt of an occupational pension.
    Apparently I'm 10 years old on MSE. Happy birthday to me...etc
  • edited 26 October 2010 at 8:15AM
    Gareth_LazelleGareth_Lazelle Forumite
    110 Posts
    edited 26 October 2010 at 8:15AM
    stevemcol wrote: »
    I think it should be equivalent to legal minimum wage (approx 11K?) but not paid at all if in receipt of an occupational pension.
    While I agree with you in theory, I do think that in practice there needs to be some incentive for everyone to save for their retirement - and not just the wealthy (if for no other reason than that it is easier for the rest of the state to bear if the costs of supporting retirees is as low as possible),

    Taking away a government pension to account for a private pension is akin to being better off on benefits than when taking a job (and given childcare costs I can well understand how that comes about),

    i.e.: they are worse off so why would they choose to do it - if you know scrimping and saving for a pension leaves you no better off than if you where to simply take the state pension you might be forgiven for thinking you are better off enjoying life and not saving at all?


    The public should be encouraged to save for their retirement, which in my opinion will require some sort of change to corporate law (to some extent no-one saves for their retirement because it means businesses can pay us less if we don't incur that cost!).

    That's kind of why I thought that the "mandatory" pension idea that was floating around a year or two ago was a pretty reasonable starting point (that is: it needed work, but it was in principle a good idea) - if everyone has to save for a pension, then either pay has to rise to meet the extra costs, or the cost of living has to decrease,
    - GL
  • While I agree with you in theory, I do think that in practice there needs to be some incentive for everyone to save for their retirement - and not just the wealthy (if for no other reason than that it is easier for the rest of the state to bear if the costs of supporting retirees is as low as possible),

    Taking away a government pension to account for a private pension is akin to being better off on benefits than when taking a job (and given childcare costs I can well understand how that comes about),

    i.e.: they are worse off so why would they choose to do it - if you know scrimping and saving for a pension leaves you no better off than if you where to simply take the state pension you might be forgiven for thinking you are better off enjoying life and not saving at all?

    The public should be encouraged to save for their retirement, which in my opinion will require some sort of change to corporate law (to some extent no-one saves for their retirement because it means businesses can pay us less if we don't incur that cost!).

    That's kind of why I thought that the "mandatory" pension idea that was floating around a year or two ago was a pretty reasonable starting point (that is: it needed work, but it was in principle a good idea) - if everyone has to save for a pension, then either pay has to rise to meet the extra costs, or the cost of living has to decrease,

    Some would save (a large slice of society would aspire to a pension in excess of 11K), some would not. 11K/minimum wage just 'feels' about right as a safety net.
    Apparently I'm 10 years old on MSE. Happy birthday to me...etc
  • teddyco wrote: »
    Gordon Brown is responsible for bankrupting the pension system. Reinstate the tax breaks for pension
    contributions and allow companies and workers to save for their own pensions.

    Socialism doesn't work!

    Clearly capitalism played no part in the banking crisis.
    Apparently I'm 10 years old on MSE. Happy birthday to me...etc
  • BoblBobl Forumite
    695 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts Combo Breaker
    How can it be fair to reward someone for staying at home all their life rather than contributing to society, why do they deserve a pension at all? Those who have paid more in should get more out.
    Life is too short to drink bad wine!
  • Bobl. You're probably right; I just have my own ideologies. Keeping people on or below the bread line, whether self inflicted or not, doesn't lead to a cohesive, peaceful society.

    Anyway, I seem to be taking this thread over so I'll bow out.
    Apparently I'm 10 years old on MSE. Happy birthday to me...etc
  • Bobl wrote: »
    Those who have paid more in should get more out.
    Harsh...

    So you presumably think that the top earners should get bigger state pensions? (And the unemployed should be left to starve in the street, assuming that they don't succumb to the elements first),
    Gordon Brown is responsible for bankrupting the pension system. Reinstate the tax breaks for pension
    contributions and allow companies and workers to save for their own pensions.

    Socialism doesn't work!
    Yes, because Robert Maxwell et al where such big socialists... ;)

    I think most would argue that our pension, where thoroughly broken by the capitalists that run the system,
    - GL
  • I'm enjoying the nonsense debate about a pension of £140 a week. A lovely distraction from all the bad news. Now we can all sit here imagining how to spend extra money we haven't got.

    What we need to know from the Government is what gets taken away when the pension goes up - winter fuel allowance? bus passes? council tax relief? personal tax allowance? free prescriptions?

    If we can't afford benefits now, then I hardly think that the Govt will increase pension costs in perpetuity without a fairly serious quid pro quo!!
  • I think pension should be paid at different levels dependent on not necessarily what you have put in moneywise but how long you have worked. I am 40 years old and have worked since leaving school and not claimed a penny in benefits. I had a child at age 17 and could have very easily gone on benefits as this was more than the YTS £35 I was getting at that time but saw that by working I would not be on £35 forever. I have not had high paid jobs but have made small contributions to a private pension. Is it fair that by the time I retire I would have worked for 45-50 years yet somebody who has never worked a day in their life is entitled to the same pension?
  • Harsh...

    So you presumably think that the top earners should get bigger state pensions? (And the unemployed should be left to starve in the street, assuming that they don't succumb to the elements first),
    Yes, because Robert Maxwell et al where such big socialists... ;)

    I think most would argue that our pension, where thoroughly broken by the capitalists that run the system,

    Pensions were thoroughly broken by Gordon Brown removing the tax breaks that have made Defined Benefit schemes uneconomical. The current financial situation certainly isn't helping though.

    Personally I think the basic state pension should be equal to the minimum wage but I doubt very much whether we can afford that.
    It's my problem, it's my problem
    If I feel the need to hide
    And it's my problem if I have no friends
    And feel I want to die


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