Basic UK State Pension and New UK State Pension?

Try again?
Otherwise I am wondering if Class of Contributions (self-employed being a different class to employee) might make a difference.

I had the 30 years by 2016 from the horse’s mouth and quite recently.

If that is the Pension Services’s on-line calculator then it is definitely worth taking it further. The calculator is a piece of software written to a budget and may not take account of every situation. Having worked in software development on a contract basis, I have seen situations where putting the facilities in place to cover all situations was deemed too expensive to bother with…

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30 years before 2016 gives you the full basic state pension of £141. But the New State pension of £185 needs 35 years.

As it was explained to me, one can earn up to 30 years up to 2016 which would qualify if achieved as that was the rule till that time even if not reaching the age to receive till much later, but the scale (old or new) it’s paid on will depend on the age of actually receiving the pension. Somehow in the process they also compare for ‘mixed’ cases whether you’d have been bettee off under old or new so that you don’t lose out but that bit lost me.

Mine are all standard employee contributions so perhaps self employed contribs are treated differently - but it’s so important I’d double check.

Obtaining the new state pension or the basic state pension depends on when you were born and when you became eligible to claim (6th April 2016 is a key date on deciding old or new - if you reached state pension age before 6th April then you will get the basic state pension - full based on 30 years contributions). The new state pension pays in full after 35 years contributions.


You’ll be able to claim the new State Pension if you’re:

  • a man born on or after 6 April 1951
  • a woman born on or after 6 April 1953

The earliest you can get the new State Pension is when you reach State Pension age.

If you reached State Pension age before 6 April 2016, these rules do not apply. Instead, you’ll get the basic State Pension.

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We are saying the same thing! Pre-2016 30 years gives you full BASIC state pension no matter when you claim it. After that the new State Pension rules apply for all 65 yr old men and 63 yr old women who will need 35 yrs for full new state pension.

Believe me I have triple checked! As have the thousands of other WASPI women.

Just as an add-on question which of course you don’t have to answer, are you saying that you don’t get your (old) state pension until you reach the (new) official pension dates? I think that’s what you were saying but I wasn’t sure…

EDIT The reason I’m asking is because of pension deferral meaning that your pension increases for the number of years you don’t claim it. I know I’m older than you so things might well have been different for me…

@JaneJones @AngelaR

I think you can top up, i.e. buy extra years. Money saving expert has a full guide which also covers deferment:

and there’s a link in the article to a full guide to buying extra years.

I’m sure you’ll have seen these articles but one never knows…

There was also a MSE article about how you had top up rights but you may have had to act before they expired- maybe at April 2022?

Edit - The NI article has the cutoff as April 2023 - sorry! So still time for people to top up? Quote “you can pay to plug gaps in your NI record dating all the way back to 2006. Yet this arrangement ends on 5 April 2023, after which you can only fill gaps going back six tax years.”

Buying extra years if one can is very rewarding - a ‘no brainer’ as Martin puts it.


So if someone if 5 years short because of the change in rules from 30 to 35 years, the gaps could still be plugged even after April 2023, @larkswood12 ?

I’ve just been checking on the basis of my partner’s NI record since he doesn’t get his pension yet and the forecast he gets seems to be X/35 times £185 pounds where X is the number of years he’s put in…

I’ve quickly scanned the article and would say it looks so, as it will be 6 years limit after 2023.

It does say of course that this can be really complicated stuff so I do caveat my guidance.

Best probably to take a while to read all the guidance…

And yes, each year buys 1/35th of new pension - however if one was ‘contracted out’ (e.g. / usually final salary pension) then likely each year would buy 1/35th after 2016 - that’s the boat I’m in.

You can top up last 6 years (i was quoted £880 a year) as long as you are beneath state retirement age. When I enquired I was told topping up earlier gaps would gain nothing! And also that if I topped up the 6th missing year it would give me an extra tuppence a week.

The difficulty is getting through to the NI people on the phone, then paying it! I did one year, and it took nearly a year to appear on my pension forecast page. But must get on with doing the rest. The earlier you do i5 the cheaper it is,

And no I don’t get anything until the new state pension year for me, which is something like 68 years old.

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Ah well, at least you do have youth left! :slight_smile:

And you’ll get a 5/35’s % boost (that’s around £25 / week?) - not too bad for 4K?

Totally agree WASPI women is a complete and utter scandal.

My wife was a University lecturer and was opted out. She doesn’t remembre being asked / given a choice in this but maybe she was.

She took early retirement in 2014 at 55 and got a final salary USS pension. She asked at the time about her State Pension and was told she had 32 qualifying years. So for a full new state pension she had to pay eight years and have 40 years contributions.

We did the calculations and decided she would be better off after about three years of retirement so have been paying the yearly top up.

I am not sure why she has to have 40 years when most people here are saying 35 years, maybe it is to do with being opted out.

Thanks for all the info, especially the Unbiased which highlights the fact that big organisations opted people out sometimes without full explaining it to them.



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Employees in contracted out pension schemes were not given the choice so far as I know. The state did not allow an employee to be contracted in and out in the same employment - it was one or the other.

A contracted out scheme required the employer to commit to paying at least.the Guaranteed Minimum Pension (GMP) to employees in the scheme. As the employee could not count that year for state pension. As if contracted out, the employer was supposed to pay GMP from the scheme to the employee when the employee eventually got their pension, instead. IIRC a lot of schemes committed to paying 125% of GMP I remember seeing, perhaps this was some kind of minimum commitment for the employer to receive tax benefits. Which employers did receive, bigtime.

I believe there were different varieties of scheme in education/universities and many changes over time. But basically if you are contracted out the contracted out scheme is responsible for you getting the GMP, and a year contracted out doesn’t count for state pension.

My brother was a hoddie to start, employed after his apprenticeship but when he went self employed he took out a private pension plan and paid into that. However he went back to university when he was 35 to gain a degree in building business management (he ended up teaching the class as he knew more than the lecturer who had no site experience!) and it was deemed illegal by the government for him to have this prive pension plan whilst being a full time student even though he worked evenings and weekends for clients. When he went back to work full time, he was able to continue with a private top up pension but he lost out on the previous one and the couple of years he was a student. The feeling at the time was that people who had tried to help themselves plan for a future were being penalised for doing so.

Morning larkswood

Before I retired a couple of years ago, I topped up my contributions.

It had a payback period of about 4 years, so well worth doing

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Hi Nick,

It is exactly to do with being opted out. Your wife’s situation and numbers practically mirror mine.

In 2016 we all got our calculations for the pension amount going forward (calculated using the old and new pension rules with the largest amount going forward). Because of a £70 odd deduction to the new pension calculation amount due to being ‘opted out’ (and for sake of clarity it was being opted out of state second pension) the largest amount was under the old state pension, so approx £140. (32 years being enough to get the full ‘old’ state pension)

From 2016 we have the opportunity to ‘catch up’ with the maximum new pension, approx £180 so about £40. Each year of ‘new pension’ acquired after 2016 increases the amount by approx £5, (180 divided by 35) so about 8 years is needed to get to the full £180 so 32 + 8 new state pension years is 40 years in total.

Hope that’s of interest and I’ve explained it OK.

Perhaps the deduction in the 2016 calculation for being opted out is also why @JaneJones is being told that topping up for years before 2016 would not gain her very much pension for those years.

Thank you it looks as though we have now determined why she has to make up eight years. It is a shame the financial services industry is such a mess, good advice back in the day was sadly lacking.



My friends was also a university lecturer and treks me they were opted out at some point.

As anyone with an opted out serps pension actually received an enhanced pension because of it? I saw projections years ago that the life companies were they only ones who made out of the deal.