Almost half of
Expatriate UK Pensioners never have annual increases to their pensions
Also see Pension Statistics
Pension Rates explained
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Britain's State Pension
Scheme is contributory, and has been so since 1925.
At first the pension was only paid to people living in the UK, but in 1929
this was extended to people living in "Empire" countries.
The old pension scheme only covered people in low paid occupations, but it
was made universal in 1948, with the introduction of the National Insurance
Scheme. From that time on, the same rules applied to everybody:
except for those who lived overseas
The first breach in universal cover happened in 1946, when the pension rate
of 10/- was increased to £1:6/-, but not for people who did not live in
Britain. Some feeble excuse was invented.
Payment of state pensions was slowly extended, at first to a handful of
countries in Europe, but in 1955 they were paid anywhere in the world.
The rates of pension are indexed. For a few years indexation only happened
every 2 or 3 years, but for a long time now it has been an annual event
except for some of those who live overseas.
Under European rules, indexation is granted to all UK pensioners living in
European countries. And under treaties with other countries, indexation is
granted to pensioners living in these countries. But for most pensioners
living in "Empire" countries the pension is not indexed.
British State Retirement Pension Rates
* If you had retired, at 65, in a frozen country in 1991, with a full 40
years of contributions, you would have received a pension of £52.00.
* If you were still in that country in 2012, you would still be on the
* If you had retired to a non-frozen country, such as Barbados, at the same age and in the same year your pension
in 2012 would be £107.45.
More than double but based on the same number of contributions to National
* If you had retired to a country in the European economic
Area, you would also get a Winter Fuel Allowance
- even in French territories in the sub-tropical West Indies!
single rates over the past 50 years
|Apr - '75
|Nov - '75
The Lucky Ones
Hundreds of thousands of expatriate UK Pensioners are lucky enough to still receive their full pensions,
despite living overseas
As in the case of Europe the United States of America differs from all the
Commonwealth countries. America's power ensures that if any British
pensioners should choose to live there in their retirement they will receive
their pension dues from Britain in FULL.
Take a British pensioner living on the American side of the Niagara Falls,
who reached retirement age, and retired to America, in 1991 with a complete
record of mandatory contributions to the National Insurance Funds. In 2012
he or she would receive the full British pension of £107.45.
However should another British pensioner, with exactly the same pension
history, have retired to live on the Canadian side of the Niagara Falls, at
the same time, he or she will still be receiving the 1990 pension of £52.00.
Less than half the pension for which they made contributions.