10th April 2011

Some time ago, amidst the furore of the pre-General Elections in the UK, I bravely sent an email to David Cameron's office stating that if he were to change the then overly-complicated system of means-testing pensioners to allow for top-up pension credits and, instead, consolidate all the benefits into one larger pension for all, this could be cost-effective as it would cut out unnecessary admin costs.  Of course, this would have benefited me and all other expat pensioners who currently cannot claim the extra top-ups.   So, I was particularly pleased to read recently that there's a new Green Paper that says the UK State Pension is to rise to around 150 pounds sterling a week.  Hooray!  But, wait a minute, what's this:  '...current pensioners will not benefit....'  Typical!   You work all your life, paying c.40 years of National Insurance (tax) payments, only to find the government moving the goal posts just when you get there.  It's particularly galling to read that those who will, in the future, qualify for the new much higher UK pension, won't have paid nearly so much - even if they do have to wait a bit longer to get it.
As I've always said, would have been much better to have deposited all those 40 years of payments under the mattress, then I could have used them as I wanted.
Is that a government cuckoo I heard just now?  Aren't they known to rob everyone else to feather their own nests?

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