State pension error warning – are you being underpaid and missing out on THOUSANDS? | The Sun

STATE pension claimants are being warned they could be missing out on THOUSANDS of pounds.

Retirees were underpaid by more than £1billion in total, it was revealed last year, with each missing out on £8,900 on average.

The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) has taken on a huge effort by to correct any mistakes or plug up any gaps where claimants may slip through.

But errors are still being made on new state pension awards according to LCP partner and former pensions minister Steve Webb.  

It affects women who previously paid a reduced rate of National Insurance Contributions, commonly known as the "married woman’s stamp". 

Under the old state pension system, these women could claim some of their state pension based on their husband's contribution.


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But errors mean that in some cases, women were told they had zero entitlement when they may have actually been entitled to over £4,000 per year.

They may have found that under the rules of the new state pension they lack the 10 years of full rate contributions necessary to qualify for any payments now. 

There is a way around it – so long as they were paying the reduced stamp 35 years before they retired. 

If that's the case, women can automatically get a pension of £85 per week if they are married or £141.85 if they are widowed or divorced.

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A previous FOI request from Steve Webb revealed that DWP discovered in 2019 that it was making errors on such cases and a correction exercise was put in place at the time. 

Mr Webb said: “When DWP admitted to me that they had been making errors for this group of women I assumed that they would have put in place procedures to sort out the problem. 

"Yet I continue to hear from women who have been wrongly told that they are not entitled to a pension. 

"What concerns me most is how many other women there may be who simply trusted what DWP have told them and are now struggling to get by without the pension which is rightfully theirs. 

"DWP should be checking all their records for such cases and putting things right, as well as making sure that these mistakes cannot happen again”.

Women who paid the married woman’s stamp at any point in the 35 years up to retirement should check if they are getting the right amount.

They should contact the Pension Service to see if they are entitled to a higher pension.

The Pension Service can be reached using the website or by calling 0800 731 0469.

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If it's found that you are not getting the right amount then you should then start getting the right payments.

And if you are owed money, you'll likely have to sit tight and wait for the DWP to send you a letter confirming your payment.

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