A recent YouGov poll has revealed that 7% of over 65s say they are close to a financial crisis. People of state pension age are being urged to check if they are entitled to Pension Credit. This may help to boost their incomes. You may be entitled to unclaimed pension credit without realising!
The survey polled 2,033 adults in the UK, of which 535 of respondents were over the age of 65. It was commissioned by Turn2Us, a national poverty charity within the UK.
The survey also found that 22% of people over 65 years old say they feel more anxious about money. This is the direct result of the rising costs of living. It was also found that 48% of those over 65 suggested they would not know how to get support. This is support surrounding finances and debt. They’d also not know how to approach organisations specialising in this.
There are currently an approximate 2.5 million people in the UK aged over 66 years who are entitled to Pension Credit to top up their retirement income. Despite this, around 30% of those who qualify for Pension Credits are not claiming them currently. The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has estimated this is equal to an estimated £1.7 billion being left unclaimed.
Furthermore, Turn2Us offer an extremely useful Benefits Calculator and are urging people to use it. Through this, you can find out how much you are entitled to claim. This is in an attempt to alleviate some of the financial burden currently being faced by those at pension age.
Pension Credit aims to bring additional support to people’s income. This is on top of their state pension. It can also be a ‘passport’ to other benefits. Such benefits include council tax reductions, the Warm Home Discount, and Housing Benefit. For people aged 75 and over, they are also eligible for a free TV licence as part of the support.
Michael Clarke, Head of Information Programmes at Turn2us says:
“Pension Credit can act as a vital lifeline for people aged over 66 who might be on a low income and it is crucial for people to find out whether they are eligible to claim.
“The impact of the cost-of-living crisis cannot be underestimated and in the coming months, additional sources of income will be a huge help for people to weather this financial storm.
“By using the Turn2us Benefits Calculator, people can find out if there is extra support out there for them or their loved ones, so we urge people to do a financial health check on our website.”
Morgan Vine, Head of Policy & Influencing at Independent Age added:
“We know Pension Credit has the potential to lift 440,000 older people out of poverty, yet it still has the lowest uptake of any income-related benefit. Too many people in later life are still having to choose whether to heat their home or buy food, despite being eligible for this financial support.
“Pension Credit is a gateway to other financial support, and we estimate that if someone received all the additional money that Pension Credit provides a springboard to, they could get up to £7,000 a year more money in their pocket.
“As the unprecedented rise in the cost-of-living continues to hit hard and push more older people to crisis point, it has never been more important for the money set aside to reach the people who need it.”
You could be entitled to unclaimed Pension Credit. Make sure to check today! Make sure you are also getting the State Pension you are entitled to.