State Pension warning as Brits told to act now or miss out on full amount

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You may miss out on the full pension if you don't pay enough in -Credit:SHARED CONTENT UNIT

People are being warned to act swiftly to secure their full State Pension amount, as a new alert has been issued. With less than a year remaining, individuals are urged to check their entitlement and address any National Insurance contribution gaps.

The amount someone receives from the State Pension is contingent on the number of qualifying National Insurance years. To qualify for any State Pension, at least 10 years of contributions are necessary, while a full New State Pension now increased to £221.20 requires at least 35 years.

Personal Finance Analyst Alice Haine from Bestinvest by Evelyn Partners advises: "Checking your tax account for any gaps in your National Insurance record quickly identifies whether you have enough qualifying years to receive a full State Pension a valuable source of income considering the full New State Pension rose by 8.5 per cent earlier this month and is now worth £11,502 a year."

Haine further explains that the State Pension Forecast found in your Personal Tax Account provides details such as the year you will start receiving your pension, the expected weekly, monthly, and annual amounts (excluding inflation) based on current and projected contributions, and a forecast assuming continued payments, reports Birmingham Live.

The record also lists the number of years with full NI contributions and the years where you may not have contributed enough. These are marked as 'year is not full' with guidance on how to fill them, which includes how much to pay in voluntary contributions.

People who may need to top up include those who took a career break as well as low earners or expatriates living and working abroad. Plugging any gaps will ensure you receive your full State Pension entitlement later on.

Ms Haine said: "Whether someone needs to top up depends on how many more years they plan to work, as they may or may not have enough time to make up the shortfall, or whether they are eligible for NI tax credits, which fill the gaps, such as those who are sick, were unemployed or took time out to raise a family or care for elderly relations."

"Remember, taxpayers can typically only backdate their NI contribution history by six years. However, the Government is currently allowing people to pay for gaps on their NI record all the way back to April 2006."

"While the deadline for this one-off concession was initially April 2023, this was extended twice last year due to high demand. This unique window of opportunity to plug up to 17 years of missed NI contributions in one go closes on April 5, 2025, so it is imperative taxpayers take advantage while they can."

You can verify your State Pension Forecast on the official GOV. UK website after confirming your identity through Government Gateway.