Why you might be paying too much for your pensions
A new report by the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has identified a range of reasons why people may be paying more for their pensions.
The report, entitled ‘Pension and Pensioners: Where Are They?’, finds that many pensioners are being overcharged for their benefits.
Among the top reasons given for this is that pensions are being made “in a way that is not a fair or consistent payment of benefits”, according to the report.
“The fact that pensioners who are in receipt of benefits do not always receive the expected payments of their pension is an issue of concern,” the report states.
“A large proportion of pensioners may be in this situation because they do not pay into their own pension plans.”
Another reason given is that the “system is not clear or transparent” about the amount of payments received.
“This is particularly important given the high levels of unemployment, homelessness and poverty among pensioners in the UK.”
The report finds that “pensioners are frequently not given the full information about how they are being paid”.
“The government needs to make clear that payments made to pensioners should be made in a way which is consistent with a fair and consistent payment,” it states.
In addition, “many pensioners, especially those with less than 50 years of experience, are being told that they have been given a lump sum payment of up to £20,000, which they may not be entitled to.”
It recommends that “a fair and transparent system should be in place so that people are aware of the amount that they are getting and should be informed about any potential costs.”
“The public purse should not be used as a lever to increase the costs of the pensioner’s pension.”
The research also points to “pensions paid in excess of their benefit entitlements”.
“This could be a form of unfair or deceptive behaviour which may affect the person or their pension,” it warns.
The UK is a member of the European Union and the United States has an agreement to share some of its benefits with other countries.
This means that some European countries pay pensions to workers in the United Kingdom, but not to workers from other European countries.
The study is not the first to identify this issue.
The government said it was committed to working with the public to find solutions.
“As part of the Government’s work to address the issues raised by the NSPCC report, we are working with our industry, government and other stakeholders to ensure that the government’s policy, and the benefits paid to those who are eligible, are consistent with the values and principles that underpin our country’s social security system,” the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said in a statement.