State Retirement Pensions: British Nationals Abroad

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 23rd February 2015.

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Photo of Baroness Benjamin Baroness Benjamin Liberal Democrat

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the impact on families of their policy to freeze rather than uprate the state pensions of those living abroad.

Photo of Baroness Benjamin Baroness Benjamin Liberal Democrat

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to alleviate loneliness among British pensioners who would prefer to migrate to join their younger families overseas but who are reluctant to do so as a result of the prospect of the freezing of their state pension.

Photo of Lord Freud Lord Freud The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The bulk of individuals receiving UK state pensions overseas voluntarily moved abroad whilst in their twenties and thirties. This means they will have spent the majority of their working lives outside the UK and contributing to the economy of their country of residence. For the small minority of pensioners who decide to move overseas at retirement it is advisable that they check the implications for their state pension before moving. There is no evidence of a proven behavioural link between the up-rating policy for the state pension and pensioner migration. Furthermore, it is not the role of the Government to encourage (or discourage) pensioner migration. The decision to move abroad is voluntary and remains a personal choice dependent on the circumstances of the individual, which will differ from person to person, and of which implications for their state pension is just one factor.

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