The state pension age for men and women is currently 65 but will increase to 66 by October 2020. The pension age will then rise to 67 between 2026 and 2028. While the basic state pension is up to £168.60 a week, those who can’t claim it can apply for universal credit, independent payments and carers allowance.
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Speaking to Express.co.uk, Ms West said: “The working-age benefits are conditionality.
“You could apply for universal credit if you were out of work and seeking work.
“If you’re a carer it might qualify you for some support or you might be able to get a benefit called carers allowance which isn’t means-tested.
“If you’ve got health problems or disabilities, you might be able to get universal credit on that basis.
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State pension ge changes mean 1950s women are having to wait up to six more years (Image: GETTY)
The state pension age for men and women is currently 65 but will increase to 66 by October 2020 (Image: GETTY )
“Again there are other benefits for example, one called the personal independence payment which is for people who have extra costs for care, daily living or mobility needs.
“Again, that isn’t means-tested.
“We would suggest anyone who is worried and struggling to manage to visit someone locally like a citizens advice bureau or Age UK who can help you.”
Ms West recently warned claimants will lose out if they don’t pay 35 years of National Insurance.
The pension age will rise to 67 between 2026 and 2028 (Image: GETTY )
She said: “Under the current system, you need 35 years of contributions across your lifetime to get the full new state pension.
“here are some complications with that because it depends on your situation before 2016.
“But broadly speaking, the system is based on 35 years.
“You may have a couple of years with travelling or whatever reason and that may not make a difference to your state pension.
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State pension facts (Image: EXPRESS)
“But if for some reason you’re not building up contributions and you have gaps then you may not get the full pension.
“It is a matter of finding out what your individual position is and if you’re not currently building up national insurance contributions see if there’s a situation where you can fill up those gaps or in some cases pay voluntary contributions.
“It may be worth it.
“Start with finding out where you are.”