State Pension Deferral: Half a million workers past pension age could be paying unnecessary tax…

A significant number of people working past the State Pension age could be paying unnecessary tax on their State Pension, according to new research [1]. This is because they failed to take up the option of deferring their State Pension until they stopped work. As a result, their entire State Pension is being taxed, in some cases at 40%.

If they deferred taking their State Pension, they would also receive a higher pension when they do eventually retire, and their personal tax allowance would then cover all or most of their State Pension, dramatically reducing the amount of tax they have to pay on their pension.

Those who defer their State Pension can receive an extra 5.8% per year on their pension for the rest of their life for each year that they defer.

Comparing someone who draws their State Pension immediately while going on working, with someone who waits for a year until they have retired before drawing their State Pension, the research finds:

  • A man who defers for a year and has an average life expectancy at 65 of 86 will be around £3,000 better off over retirement than someone who takes his State Pension immediately and pays more tax
  • A woman who defers for a year and has an average life expectancy at 65 of 88 will be around £4,000 better off. As well as the tax advantage, she also enjoys two extra years of pension at the higher rate

All is not lost for those who have started to draw their State Pension, as they have the option of ‘un-retiring’ – they can tell the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to stop paying their State Pension and then resume receiving it at a higher rate when they stop work.

There has been a significant increase in the number of people working past the age of 65, and the research identified that most of these people are claiming their State Pension as soon as it is available. For around half a million workers, this means every penny of their State Pension is being taxed, in some cases at the higher rate.

If an individual’s earnings are enough to support them, it could make sense to consider deferring taking a State Pension so that less of their pension disappears in tax. A typical woman could be around £4,000 better off over the course of her retirement by deferring for a year until she has stopped work, and a typical man could be £3,000 better off.

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DISCLAIMER:

INFORMATION IS BASED ON OUR CURRENT UNDERSTANDING OF TAXATION LEGISLATION AND REGULATIONS. ANY LEVELS AND BASES, OF AND RELIEFS FROM TAXATION, ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE.

A PENSION IS A LONG-TERM INVESTMENT.

THE FUND VALUE MAY FLUCTUATE AND CAN GO DOWN, WHICH WOULD HAVE AN IMPACT ON THE LEVEL OF PENSION BENEFITS AVAILABLE.

PENSIONS ARE NOT NORMALLY ACCESSIBLE UNTIL AGE 55. YOUR PENSION INCOME COULD ALSO BE AFFECTED BY INTEREST RATES AT THE TIME YOU TAKE YOUR BENEFITS. THE TAX IMPLICATIONS OF PENSION WITHDRAWALS

WILL BE BASED ON YOUR INDIVIDUAL CIRCUMSTANCES, TAX LEGISLATION AND REGULATION, WHICH ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE IN THE FUTURE.

THE VALUE OF INVESTMENTS AND INCOME FROM THEM MAY GO DOWN. YOU MAY NOT GET BACK THE ORIGINAL AMOUNT INVESTED.

PAST PERFORMANCE IS NOT A RELIABLE INDICATOR OF FUTURE PERFORMANCE.

“The information contained in this article is intended solely for information purposes only and does not constitute advice.  While every attempt has been made to ensure that the information contained on this article has been obtained from reliable sources, Vizion Wealth is not responsible for any errors or omissions. In no event will Vizion Wealth be liable to the reader or anyone else for any decision made or action taken in reliance on the information provided in this article”.

Source data:

[1] Royal London Policy Paper 33 – ‘Are half a million people paying unnecessary tax on their state pension?’ is available from www.royallondon. com/policy-papers. The analysis is based on the Family Resources Survey for 2016/17, which is a representative sample of nearly 20,000 households from across the United Kingdom.

Posted by Andrew Flowers

Andrew is the managing partner of Vizion Wealth and has been involved in the offshore and onshore financial services industry for over 18 years. Andrew was the driving force behind Vizion Wealth after years of experience in a number of advisory roles within high profile wealth management, private banking and independent financial advisory firms in the UK.

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