Thousands of women who divorced later in life could be missing out on up to £80.45 extra in their pension, a former pension minister has claimed.
Sir Steve Webb, now a pensions consultant, said thousands of ladies would have come under the old state Pension scheme if they reached pension aged before April 6th 2016.
Little known rule
But under a little known rule they should have applied to the Department For Work and Pensions (DWP) if they divorced after reaching pension age and were not on a full pension as they were entitled to an increase based on their former husband’s contributions.
Sir Steve said many women were unaware they were entitled to more and said the DWP had been unable to tell him how many women had made an application.
In the early 2000s there were around 4,000 divorces in women over 60 and the number has been rising ever since.
He commented: “Every year thousands of women over state pension age get divorced, but many may not be aware that they can qualify for a state pension boost as a result.
“Any woman who reached pension age before April 6 2016 and has since got divorced should contact the DWP if she is not on a full basic state pension to see if she is entitled to an increase based on her ex-husband’s contributions.”
A DWP spokesman said: “It is important that individuals report to us any change of circumstances that may affect their State Pension entitlement.
“As a reminder, we include information on this in the leaflet that accompanies the uprating notifications we send to pensioners every year.
We would encourage anyone who thinks they have failed to claim a state pension increase they are eligible for to contact the Department.”
“The DWP have dedicated, trained teams for handling all contacts from customers asking us to check their pension entitlement.”