Almost half of all pensioners are entitled to Pension Credit. Yet about a third of those eligible (up to 1.8 million older people) are still not claiming it. If you’re one of them‚ you could be missing out on up to £1‚500 a year.
There are two parts of Pension Credit – you may be eligible to receive one or both of them. Guarantee Credit is designed to make sure that people aged 60 and over have a guaranteed level of income. It is worked out by comparing your income with the amount the Government thinks you need to live on. This amount is known as the standard minimum guarantee. Savings Credit is paid to people aged 65 and over‚ who have made some retirement provision in addition to their basic State Pension.
• The minimum age to qualify for Guarantee Credit is gradually rising from age 60 to 65. The minimum age for Savings Credit is 65.• Pension Credit is means-tested so your income and savings are taken into account when it is worked out.
Pension Credit includes help towards mortgage payments and service charges for home owners, and extra money for people who receive Carers Allowance or disability benefits.
It's worth claiming Pension Credit even if you are only entitled to a small amount, as it can help you qualify for other benefits.
Pension Credit will soon be changing to include a new element called Housing Credit, which you can get if you're eligible for support with rent. This will replace Housing Benefit. This change won't happen before October 2014.
Use our online benefits calculator to find out whether you could be eligible for Pension Credit
Call the Pension Service on 0800 99 1234. They will ask you questions over the phone and fill the form in for you. Or visit the GOV.UK website to download a claim form.
“I’m much better off now. It is easier to make ends meet.”
Sixty-four year-old Terry had no idea he and his wife were entitled to Pension Credit and full payment of their council tax bill. That was until the lads at the working men’s club told him to go see Amanda at my local Age Cymru.
“I’d worked nearly all my life in the building trade and I just couldn’t do it anymore because it took its toll on my body.
“So I went to work at a recycling plant instead‚ picking things off the line‚ but the conditions were terrible. My skin was coming out in a rash all down my back‚ arms and legs. I was scratching all the time."We save over £1‚000 a year"“I knew I had to pack my job in but I was worried because I was only 60 and couldn’t claim my pension yet. But Amanda took care of me. She filled in some forms and helped me and my wife claim Pension Credit of £198.45 a week. We also got full Council Tax Benefit so we save over £1‚000 a year.
“When I was working I was taking home about £150 a week. I had hit my saving because the money I was getting wasn’t enough to live on. I’m much better off now. It is easier to make ends meet.
“If you’re like me and you’re over 60 and you don’t have a lot of money you should go and speak to your local Age Cymru. They are always there to help you and give you good advice.”
FS19 State Pension (PDF 788KB)
FS48 Pension Credit (PDF 373KB)
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