State pension forecast: Check if you can increase your retirement income

Financial expert explains changes to the state pension

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The Government’s state pension forecast tool could tell people if they could increase their state pension sum, and how to do it. The tool is completely free to use and can be accessed via the website.

The forecast can be used to find out how much state pension someone could get.

This could in turn show them if they are entitled to the full state pension and whether they could increase their sum up to the maximum amount.

They can also use the service to find out when they will be able to start getting their state pension.

The forecast can only be used by people who are not already getting their state pension.

In addition to this, anyone who has reached state pension age but has deferred their pension will not be able to get a forecast.

To use the tool, Britons must prove their identity via the Government Gateway.

However, anyone who has not used the Government Gateway before will be able to register.

The full new state pension is currently worth £179.60 a week.

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From April 11, 2022, this amount will rise to £185.15.

Britons should be aware that the forecast does not take into account any potential future increases in the state pension when providing them with an indication of what their sum will be.

Whether or not someone can get the full sum depends on their National Insurance record.

Up to 35 qualifying years may be needed on an individual’s record to get the full new state pension.

People may therefore be able to find out from their forecast if they could increase their sum by improving their National Insurance record.

This could be done through employment or self-employment, claiming certain benefits or paying voluntary contributions.

The state pension age is currently set at 66, making this the earliest age someone could get their state pension.

Some people may have to wait longer, as the state pension age is scheduled to rise to age 67 by 2028.

It is then set to increase again to age 68 by 2046.

There are other ways people can apply for a state pension forecast if they do not wish to use the online service.

They can fill out a BR19 application form and send it to the Future Pension Centre by post.

Alternatively, they can call the Future Pension Centre and ask for a forecast to be posted out.

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