MP criticises pension credit announcement

Stephen Lloyd, Independent MP for Eastbourne and Willingdon, has criticised the government’s announcement of changes to pension credits for mixed age couples.

Lloyd said that the government “must not be allowed to bury bad news by surreptitiously releasing it when the bedlam caused by their own Brexit incompetence is at its height”.

The announcement, made on Monday (14 January), stated that both partners in a household would have to have reached state pension age to transition from working age benefits to pension age benefits from May 2019.

Previously, the law stated that only one member of the couple needed to be of state pension age.

Lloyd continued: “I think it tells us a lot about how this government believes the news would be received by retired people up and down the country, that they snuck their announcement out at 7:20 on Monday evening.

“Just when most of Westminster is fixated with Brexit. Frankly, I’m not impressed, and neither will the pension public be once they’ve found out.”

Analysis from Royal London found that the changes could cut benefits available to some older mixed age couples by over £7,000.

Lloyd added: “I have written to the pensions minister seeking urgent clarification.”

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