The state pension is something which many people rely on during their retirement, once they’ve reached state pension age. And, for some people, tax-free pension credit can help to make life in their later years easier. Not everyone will be entitled to receive this particular payment however, as pension credit is an income-related benefit. It’s made up of two parts, known as Guarantee Credit and Savings Credit.
Guarantee Credit tops up a person’s weekly income.
For a single person to be eligible, this figure must be below £167.25, while the weekly income of a couple must be below £255.25.
The Guarantee Credit is a top up amount which will ensure your weekly income then meets these figures, depending on which circumstances apply to you.
Meanwhile, Savings Credit is an additional payment available for those eligible and who have saved some money towards their retirement – such as via a pension.
At the moment, a single person who is eligible will be paid up to £13.73 per week via Savings Credit.
Couples eligible for Savings Credit will get up to £15.35 per week.
State pension UK: Changes to pension credit rules will soon come into effect (Image: GETTY)
Changes to pension credit will come into effect in May 2019
Do you qualify for pension credit?
In order to be eligible for this income-related benefit, you must live in England, Scotland, or Wales.
What’s more, you or your partner must have reached pension credit qualifying age – which the government website explains is state pension age.
You must live with your partner, be that your husband, wife, civil partner, or someone else you live with as thought you were married.
Pension Credit changes from May 2019
The pension credit eligibility will change on May 15, 2019.
State pension UK: The rules on pension credit for couples are going to change in May 2019 (Image: GETTY)
State pension UK: Pension credit can be a great help during some people’s retirement years (Image: GETTY)
From this date, if you’re in a couple, you’ll only be eligible to start getting pension credit if either of the following criteria apply:
- You and your partner have both reached pension credit qualifying age
- One of your has reached pension credit qualifying age, and is claiming Housing Benefit for you as a couple
If you’re not already getting pension credit on May 14 2019, you may be able to backdate your claim, and you could still be eligible to get pension credit.
If you do ask for your claim to be backdated to May 14 or before, you’ll need to apply by August 13 2019.
Should you already be getting pension credit, after May 15 2019, you’ll continue to do so, unless your entitlement stops – such as your circumstances change.