UK - The Liberal Democrats would increase the basic state pension from £82 to £109 per week in return for a later retirement age of 67.
Leader Charles Kennedy today unveiled his vision of a universal “Citizen's Pension” which would rise year-on-year in line with the increase in average earnings, paid to all those over state pension age.
But the reform would mean an end to the State Second Pension; cuts on means-tested benefits; and a controversial increase in the retirement age. This latter reform would follow after a 25-year lead-in.
The party has also spoken out in support of automatic enrolment in non-state pensions, with a right to opt out, an idea reportedly floated in the soon-to-be published Pensions Commission report.
Kennedy commented: “We need a pensions settlement which can last so people can plan for retirement. That means securing a political consensus first for change, then for long-term stability. After the Turner Report is released, we should seek to agree a new ‘Pensions Accord’.
“This should be a consensus not only on the details of a new settlement, but an agreement that cross-party consultation would be a part of any future attempt to change the pensions architecture.”
The Conservative Party criticised the timing of Kennedy’s proposals.
Shadow work and pensions secretary, Sir Malcolm Rifkind, said: “I am surprised that the Lib Dems have chosen to pre-empt the Turner Report by launching their response to it today...The Turner Report deserves careful study and a considered response – not this sort of pre-emption.”
Jonathan Stapleton asks whether newly-accredited professional trustees should be a statutory fixture on pension scheme boards.
Savers are being warned by the Insolvency Service to guard their pension pots from investment scammers and negligent trustees as it winds up 24 companies.
Respondents say they should only be required in certain situations as the system is not broken.