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Do part-years count for state pension?

Discussion in 'Retirement' started by asnac, Jan 27, 2019.

  1. asnac

    asnac Established commenter

    I can't find the answer to this on the gov.uk site anywhere.

    To get the full state pension you need 35 years of contributions. There have been a number of years in my life where I've paid maybe 20 weeks, 15 weeks etc. I realise that these cannot count as 'qualifying' years for the state pension, but what I don't know is if the contributions during those years are ignored altogether, or if the part-years are added together to create whole qualifying years.

    This actually makes quite a difference to me, as if they don't count, then the only way I can get the maximum pension is to carry on working and paying contributions right up till the new state pension age.
     
  2. diddydave

    diddydave Established commenter

    Sundaytrekker and catmother like this.
  3. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    I think it means 52 weeks of contributions but as diddydave says the checker page will confirm your years.
     
  4. Sundaytrekker

    Sundaytrekker Star commenter

    As I understand it, you have to have full years, or make voluntary contributions within certain time frames, to reach full years.

    Asnac, were you a carer of young children and receiving child benefit in those years? That makes a difference.

    As diddydave says, register on gov.uk and you can see your record. Then you will know if you need to phone and query any of it.
     
  5. Bedlam3

    Bedlam3 Lead commenter

    My understanding is that if you earn over a certain amount in a tax year then it counts.
    I think the qualifying amount is now something around £8000 but I'm not sure,
     
  6. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    I was told I need a minimum of 26 qualifying weeks( there was minimum amount to earn in any week to qualify) and any years not 'making the cut' were just ignored, or one could pay to make up the weeks. Though there was a time limit, something like 7 years after, in which to chose to make up contributions.
     
  7. phatsals

    phatsals Established commenter

    In the early years, each week was credited/paid for. More recently it's an earnings threshold.

    You really must get your own up to date statement from either the link provided above, or your Personal Tax Account, both provide the relevant information.

    Ages 16-19 were credited automatically and the pre-2016 SP was 30 years. The new pension is 35 years, but that only applies if you never contracted out, if you did it will be more. Your own personal statement will give you your current entitlement and what you can do make up. Gaps before 2015 may not be worth repaying as they won't count towards the new pension.

    You have 6 years to buy back any shortfall.
     
  8. jonnymarr

    jonnymarr New commenter

    This question has come up before. I still think the info below is correct. If so, it's not much more than 6k in total earnings in the tax year, rather than any number of weeks.

    A ‘qualifying year’ sounds as though you might need to have a perfect 52 weeks of working for it to count. In fact, for ‘Class 1’ NICs, any tax year where you receive a minimum amount of earnings or credits (which you receive for example, if you cannot work because you are bringing up children who are aged under 12) can be a qualifying year. The 2018/19 tax year could be ‘banked’ as a qualifying year provided you have earned the equivalent of 52 x £116 (this amount is known as the Lower Earnings Limit) – total £6,032. You could also make up a qualifying year by, say, earning £116 for 40 weeks and then receiving NI credits for the other 12 weeks. Please note that any pay periods in which you have earned under the Lower Earnings Limit will not count towards the total.
     
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  9. jonnymarr

    jonnymarr New commenter

    Although Bedlam3 might be closer to the mark with the 8k figure if you are employed ( as teachers tend to be ) rather than self-employed.

    Do I need to pay National Insurance?
    For the 2018/2019 tax year, employees must pay National Insurance if they earn more than £8,424 in the year.
    Self-employed workers will pay Class 2 contributions if they earn more than £6,205, in addition to Class 4 if they earn more than £8,242.
     
  10. mjfp509

    mjfp509 New commenter

    You have to have earned over £6032 in the qualifying year in total. It doesn't have to be over a certain number of weeks, so technically you could work for 6 months earning £1005.33 or three months at £2010.66. The caveat is, it has to come from one source of employment at a time. If you have two jobs going at the same time and just scrape over the lower qualifying limit, it doesn't count. However, you could work in job A for 3 months earning £3016 and job B for 3 months after earning £3016, totalling £6032.
     
    emerald52 likes this.
  11. Dunteachin

    Dunteachin Star commenter

    Yes, part-time years count.

    I worked pt for about 30 consecutive years, but obviously earned enough each year to be counted as a full year.

    I have 38 full years, according to you.gov. If you use the link above, you'll see exactly how you stand, and your work record.

    Because teachers are contracted out, our state pension is lower. Mine is estimated to be about £550 per month. I haven't decided whether to make Class 3 contributions or not, yet.
     
    emerald52 and border_walker like this.
  12. meggyd

    meggyd Lead commenter

    Are you bringing up children? It used to be the case that the years when you received child benefit counted even if you did not earn. Not sure about the new benefit rules.
     
  13. JanE60

    JanE60 New commenter

    Best to speak to someone at HMRC. You can book a telephone consultation. You will be able to "top up" any incomplete years, but some years are cheaper than others. I've just topped up a year which, for just under £70 will bring £4 a week increase on state pension. I think everyone's situation is different. Just ask HMRC.
     
  14. Prim

    Prim Occasional commenter

    Thanks for the link and I've just found out that I only have 6 more years to pay to get to my full amount. Those part time jobs at 16 paid off.
     
  15. Dunteachin

    Dunteachin Star commenter


    Do you mean £700?...
     
  16. Brianthedog

    Brianthedog Occasional commenter

    I'm retiring soon and will have 5 1/2 years left after I do before receiving my state pension. On my state pension forecast, if I continue to pay NI I will get a maximum pension of £166 a week ( I think). My question is, if I don't work how do I top up my NI contributions for those years?
     
  17. phatsals

    phatsals Established commenter

    Around about October the following tax year, your statement is updated, you can contact HMRC to pay any shortfall then or at any time in the following 6 years provided you haven't claimed your pension. If you don't contact them, eventually you will receive a letter telling you of the missing contributions, you can then decide if you want to pay for them.

    If you get any examiner or invigilator work you become entitled to pay Class 2 NIC, about £2.20pw as opposed to £15ish for Class NIC.
     
  18. Dunteachin

    Dunteachin Star commenter

    I'm 63. I had a recent chat with the state pension people about paying for missing years, and the chap explained which years were worth contributing to, and which weren't, because they'd have no effect.
    If I paid about £700 a year for the next 3 years, I'd get about £48 per month extra, when I claim the pension. I'd be in my early 70s before I recoup the outlay.

    I don't recall getting letters about this...
     
  19. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    I never received any communication either, apart from some in my 40s, when I just wasn't thinking too much about pensions and way before all the changes to pension age etc. :rolleyes: :mad:
     
  20. JanE60

    JanE60 New commenter

    No. 2015/16 (I think) was a changeover year from old to new system - this is what I was told. So was a bargain top-up. But you're right, most years are around £700.
     

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