Increase to pension rate from 6 October 2016
If you have a pension, we will write to you to let you know what your new pension rate will be.
A full rate old-age pension is currently £199.99 per week, but this will rise by £4.20 a week up to £204.19.
For a married couple receiving a pension based on the contributions of the husband, the maximum rate will rise by £7 a week to £339.01.
You can read more about the increase below.
Rise in rate of old age pension
What is a pension?
A pension is a weekly benefit paid to you when you reach a certain age.
The amount of pension you receive will depend on the amount of social security contributions you have paid during your working life.
Age you can take a pension
If you were born before 1 January 1955, your pension age is 65.
If you were born on or after 1 January 1955, your pension age has changed.
Women who registered with Social Security before 1 January 1975 can claim a pension when they reach the age of 60.
Changes to the state pension age
Claiming a pension early
You can claim a reduced pension at any point when you’re between age 63 and 65, but this reduced rate is payable for life.
You must take this into account when planning for your future.
Taking your pension early at 63
How to claim a pension
If you're living in Jersey and you've paid contributions in the last six years, you should receive a letter from us about three months before you reach your 65th birthday.
This letter includes an authentication code which you can use to apply for a pension online.
If you haven’t received a letter from us one month before your 65th birthday, you can apply for a pension application form using the online form below.
You can also use this form to apply for a pension if you:
- live outside Jersey or
- want to claim your pension early
You should complete this form as soon as possible. We can't back-date a pension for more than six months before the date you claim.
Ask for a pension application form
Current pension rate
The current full-rate pension is £199.99 per week.
This will be increasing on the 6 October 2016. We will write to you in September to let you know what your new rate will be.
Review of the pension rate
We use the Jersey Earnings Index and the Retail Price Index (Pensioners) to work out the value of the pension. This ensures pensions generally increase in line with the growth in earnings and takes into account increases in the cost of living.
You don't have to do anything to receive this increase. It'll be paid to you automatically and you'll receive a letter telling you your new rate.
How your pension is paid
Your pension will be paid four weeks in advance directly into an account with any recognised bank or building society.
We can pay your pension to you anywhere in the world.
Tax and your pension
Your pension is taxable, so you must declare how much pension you receive on your tax return each year.
If you live in Jersey, we will send you a statement each January which will show your total pension for the previous year.
Requirements for claiming a pension
To get a pension, you must have paid contributions for at least four and a half years.
To get a pension at the full rate (100%), you must have paid or been credited with a total of 45 years' worth of contributions.
If your contribution record is 80% full, you'll be paid 80% of the standard rate of pension.
You won't normally get a pension if you have less than 10% entitlement (about four and a half years' worth of contributions), unless you have also paid contributions in a country which we have an agreement with.
See below for the list below of countries that Jersey has agreements with.
Paying contributions in another country
If you've paid social security contributions in Jersey and in another country that we have a reciprocal agreement with, we may be able to pay you a pension.
We’ll need to receive confirmation of your contributions from that country.
Jersey currently has agreements with:
|Barbados||Isle of Man||Spain|
If you're currently living outside Jersey, you'll need to contact the social security office of the country that you worked in and ask them to forward us details of the contributions that you have paid there.
If you live in Jersey, you can contact us on +44(0) 1534 445505.
Working and claiming a pension
You don’t have to retire to get your pension. You can still work and receive pension payments.
If you do work after you reach pension age, you won’t have to pay contributions but you’ll need to swap your blue registration card (or social security card) for a red one.
Exemptions from contributions
Leaving work and receiving Income Support
You might not be able to claim Income Support if you take your pension early and leave your job without good reason (you don't have to stop working to claim a pension).
You'll also be required to find a job if you're under pension age.
You should speak to us before making any decisions.
If you leave your job or fail to look for work (Income Support)
Effects on other benefits
There are some benefits that won't be paid once you start receiving your pension, such as:
- Short Term Incapacity Allowance (STIA)
- Long Term Incapacity Allowance (LTIA)
- Invalidity Benefit
- Incapacity Pension
- Home Carer’s Allowance
- Survivor’s Allowance
- Survivor’s Pension
You can however claim disablement benefit and receive a pension at the same time. However, we can only pay an increase for a dependant wife on either your disablement benefit or your pension.
Claiming an increase in your pension for your wife
If you’re a married man, and you’re living with your wife, you could get an increase of up to £132.02 a week if your marriage took place before 1 April 2001.
If you are separated, you may get an increase if you are paying your wife maintenance.
Your pension can be increased if:
- your wife is under 65
- you were married before 1 April 2001
- she is living with you, or
- she isn't living with you but you fully or mainly support her financially
The pension increase can't be paid if your wife is already getting a pension or any other social security benefit.
Women and pensions
If you're a woman and you registered with Social Security before 1 January 1975, you're entitled to claim a pension at 60 years old.
If you decide to do this, you won't be able to receive any benefit that is paid to people under normal pension age, eg Short Term Incapacity Allowance.
If you haven't paid enough contributions to qualify for a pension at 60, you can continue to pay contributions until you're 65, while you’re still working.
Claiming a pension as a married woman
If you're near or over 65 when your husband claims his pension, you should receive a letter inviting you to claim a pension based on your husband’s contribution record. Contact us if you don't get a letter.
Using your husband's contributions to claim a pension
You can get a pension of your own using your husband's contribution record if:
- you were married before 1 April 2001
- you're at least 65 years old
- your husband is at least 65 years old and has qualified for a pension
Using an ex-husband's contributions to claim a pension
If you were married before 1 April 2001 but have since divorced, we may be able to use your ex-husband’s contributions instead of your own for the time you were married.
If you're under 65 when your husband qualifies for his pension
If you're under 65 when your husband qualifies for his pension and you were married before 1 April 2001, he will get an increase to his pension for you.
When you reach 65, that increase will be payable to you directly as a pension in your own right.
If you’re receiving widow’s benefit, you’ll be entitled to either a widow’s pension or an old age pension based on your own contribution record when you reach pension age. You’ll get whichever is more beneficial to you (based on your contribution record).
If you were married after 1 April 2001, you’ll receive a pension based on your own contribution record.
If you were married before 1 April 2001, we can use your husband’s contributions instead of your own for the time you were married.
Telling us about changes in your circumstances
You must tell us if you:
- change address
- change your bank or bank account
- are detained in prison
- get married
- get divorced
- leave Jersey
Appealing a pension decision
If you're unhappy with a decision, you can contact the Pension Zone at Social Security in La Motte Street.
Pension forecasts and predictions
Our pension advisors can give you a prediction of how much pension you might be entitled to.
You can get application forms for a pension forecast from the main reception of Social Security or you can call and ask for a form to be sent to you.
This can be useful if you’re thinking of taking your pension early, or retiring and opting out of the Social Security system at 60.
Opting out of contributions at 60
Concessions and benefits for pensioners
You may be entitled to concessions and benefits once you reach pension age.
Concessions and Benefits for Senior Citizens on the Citizens Advice website