State Pension is a vital fund given later in life when your working years are behind you. The full new state pension is £175.20 per week – but you don’t automatically get this amount, and how much you get depends on how much you have put into the system throughout your life.
There are two types of State Pension.
You can claim the basic State Pension if you are:
• A man born before April 6, 1951
• A woman born before April 6, 1953.
You can claim the new State Pension if you have at least 10 years’ NI contributions and are:
• A man born on or after April 6, 1951
• A woman born on or after April 6, 1953.
However, to qualify for any State Pension at all you need to have National Insurance contributions, and that generally means you need to have worked throughout your life.
You need a minimum of ten ‘qualifying years’ to get any State Pension at all, and 35 years if you want the full amount.
When you’re working you pay National Insurance and get a qualifying year if:
• you’re employed and earning over £183 a week from one employer
• you’re self-employed and paying National Insurance contributions
For some, you may qualify for your a State Pension based on your spouse or civil partner’s National Insurance record.
Previously, particularly women, who stayed at home to look after children would have been able to receive a payout based on their husband’s NICs.
But for those retiring under the new State Pension system as of April 2016, this is no longer automatically guaranteed.
Under the new system, everyone is now responsible for building their own NI record.