Your State pension age (SPA) is the earliest age you are allowed to claim your State pension.
The age you can claim your State pension has been increasing.
From 2010 to 2018 the State pension equalised for men and women to age 65. This caused several issues which is well documented by the WASPI (Women Against State Pension Increases) campaign. Whilst WASPI women accepted it was fair for pension ages to be equalised, many have been left in pensioner poverty because they were unaware of the changes that were being introduced and those who were contacted about the changes were not given sufficient time to plan for their future retirement.
From 2018 until 2020 the State pension age increased for everyone to age 66 and from 2026 to 2028 the State pension will increase again to age 67. It is set to further increase to 68 from 2044-2046.
The timing of any increase to the SPA is set out in legislation but is reviewed at least every 6 years by Government.
A review took place in 2017 and it was recommended that the SPA should be increased to 68 at an earlier date of 2037-2039, however Government confirmed that they would complete a further review before legislating for this. A review which took place in 2022, recommended again that the rise to 68 should go ahead earlier than originally planned in 2037-2039, but Government took the decision to delay a decision for a further 2 years.
According to a report by the Government Actuary that was published earlier in 2023, projected life expectancies at retirement for the UK have in fact reduced by over 2 years since the previous review in 2017.
Furthermore, in the 2017 report, Government set a long term target that up to 32% of an adult’s life should be spent in retirement. At that time there was an expectation that increasing life expectancy would increase the SPA to meet this target, however the Government Actuary at that time assessed the increase in SPA could actually be delayed until 2037-39 and the increase to 68 delayed to 2053-55.
Despite the Government Actuary’s report there have been no plans to delay an increase to 67.
Going forward it will also be interesting to see how mortality data is interpreted in the coming years once the full affects of Covid-19 are realised.
If you would like to check your own State pension age please click on the link below.