I am struggling to come to grips with the government's proposed new arrangements for old age pensions.
As far as I can tell, people who have already qualified for the pension or, like me, will do so before 2017 will not benefit from the new flat rate pension of £144 per week. Instead, we will continue to get the existing pension of £107 per week. (Both these figures will be uprated to reflect inflation.) It is not yet clear to me whether the additional pension credit (payable to pensioners with very low incomes) which will be abolished when the new flat rate pension becomes payable will be retained for those having to live with the existing pension.
It is nevertheless obvious that the effect of the proposed arrangements will be to create two classes of pensioner: those who were already receiving a pension before 2017 and who will be stuck on a lower rate and those who will benefit from the new flat rate. The former will of course be older than the latter. This seems a strange way to introduce greater fairness into the system.
I need hardly add that what is proposed is unlikely to be welcomed by those of us wrinklies stuck on the lower rate.