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Underpaid state pensions: women urged to have their state pension checked

Lane Clark & Peacock LLP has published a follow-up to its report Are tens of thousands of older women being underpaid state pension? The investment consultancy says that in response to that report more than 160,000 people visited its calculator website, questions were raised in Parliament and several million pounds have been refunded by DWP to women affected.

The follow-up report summarises what has been learned about the issue in the two months since the original report was published, and what needs to happen next. A key message of the paper is to encourage a much wider group of women to come forward to get their state pension checked.

According to the firm, the central issue is that under the old state pension system, married women could claim a basic state pension at 60 per cent of the full rate based on their husband's contributions where this would be bigger than the pension they could get based on their own contributions.

Since 17 March 2008, this uplift to 60 per cent should have happened automatically, whilst before that date a married woman had to make a 'second claim' to have her state pension increased when her husband turned 65. The initial paper estimated that tens of thousands of 'post March 2008' women had not had their pension automatically increase and tens of thousands of 'pre March 2008' women had not put in a claim to have their pension increased and had therefore missed out for more than a decade.

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