The state of UK frozen pensions

The case of UK frozen pensions may be heating up as two Tory backbench MPs plan to bring an amendment to the Pensions Bill.

Currently, UK expat pensioners residing outside of the UK or within the Commonwealth have had their pensions frozen since their payment, with UK inflation rates not applying to their only source of revenue. The battle has raged for some years now, but suffered a major setback when the European Courts of Justice backed the government, but Sir Roger Gale and Sir Peter Bottomley are giving their support to British citizens suffering under current legislation.

The way things stand it is entirely possible that expat pensioners in their 90’s living in Canada are expected to live off £20 a week (the level of the state pension 30 years ago), whilst pensioners of the same age living within the EU get £110 a week.

Hardly seems fair, does it? Whilst Sir Peter and Sir Roger’s backing is no doubt a boon to those not getting their fair due, the MPs are realistic about their chances of impacting legislation that has existed for some 30 plus years.

Sir Roger said “We feel our overseas pensioners should get a fair financial deal, with their pensions brought into line with the amounts paid in countries where we have a reciprocal agreement. We do not know what the result will be, but it is worth a shot.”

We certainly agree with Sirs Gale and Bottomley, but with HMRC notoriously difficult to budge regarding expat finances (let’s not forget the current tight-lippedness regarding the ROSIIP case), this may be a cold winter for expat pensioners.