Pension top-up opportunity

The opportunity to make extra National Insurance contributions to boost the flat-rate state pension is likely to be worthwhile for many older women, says the Guardian.

Typically, they may not have paid enough NI to qualify for the full new flat-rate pension that will be introduced in 2016. Payment of new ‘Class 3A’ contributions will allow them to buy up to £25 per week of extra pension between October 2015 and April 2016. The Guardian points out that to get an extra £25 per week with an annuity, you would have to pay up to £25,000, so even if the government’s rates are more generous, the amounts required for top-ups could be substantial.