United Kingdom state pension age to rise to 68 sooner than planned - minister

Work and Pensions Secretary David Gauke accelerated by seven years the lift in the state pension age to 68

The move is created to keep the SPA in line with rising life expectancy estimates, and could save the government £74bn by 2045/46.

People now aged 47 or younger will have to work longer before they can claim a state pension after the government raised the retirement age.

The changes mirror the timetable set out by John Cridland in March 2017, which proposed bringing forward the increase in State Pension age to 68 between 2037 and 2039. Previously the retirement age was 67.

The change will affect everyone born between April 6 1970 and April 5 1978.

This timetable would save the equivalent of around £400 per household as it would reduce the rise in pensions by 0.4% of GDP between 2039 and 2040.

The age at which a person can access the state pension in the United Kingdom will be raised over 2 years by 2037.

Latest projections from the Office for National Statistics show that the number of people over State Pension age in the United Kingdom is expected to grow by a third between 2017 and 2042, from 12.4 million in 2017 to 16.9 million in 2042.

The Department for Work and Pensions had planned to phase in the increase from 2044 to 2046 but hopes to bring the deadline forward, citing the increasing pressure on public finances.

A separate report from the Government Actuary's Department, also out today, seems to point towards the state pension age rising to 70 for anyone now aged 30 or under.


The Shadow Work and Pension Secretary, Debbie Abrahams referred to the announcement as, "an astonishing continuation of austerity".

The main opposition Labour Party pushed back against what it characterised as an extension to the ruling Conservatives' austerity policies, saying that if it was in government it would keep the retirement age at 66.

"We can not allow this Government to push people to work longer and longer to pay for its failed austerity agenda".

Mr Gauke told the Commons the move would save the Treasury £74 billion by 2045/46 compared with the previous proposals.

The move is coming seven years earlier than expected, in order to "maintain fairness between generations in line with continuing increases in life expectancy".

A 65-year-old could expect to live for a further 13.5 years, or 23pc of their adult life.

Secretary of State for Work and Pensions David Gauke said: 'Since 1948 the state pension has been an important part of society, providing financial security to all in later life.

'Labour wants a different approach, in our manifesto we committed to leaving the state pension age at 66, ' she said. "Without this decision people of working age would have faced a heavy tax burden".

Age UK was even more critical of the plans, saying the government was "picking the pockets of everyone in their late 40s and younger, despite there being no objective case in Age UK's view to support it at this point in time".

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