Pensioners warned of agonising wait as key decision ‘punted into long grass’

Brits will have to wait in agony to find out whether the UK’s state pension age will be raised.

Since 2018, the state pension age has gradually increased to 65 for both men and women.

It is now determined by when you were born, but the policy is still being reviewed.

The state pension age has long been proposed to be raised, but Jeremy Hunt’s Spring Budget left Britons in the dark about whether this will happen.

Ex-Pensions Secretary Sir Steve Webb says the Government will continue to leave the public in the lurch on the issue.

Speaking to Mark Longhurst, he said: “There’s a deadline of May for the publication of the review document and a decision.

“My sense is that they will punt that into the long grass. They don’t have to make a decision, they have to publish the report and the results of that.

“But they could say ‘with Covid, we’re not sure how long people are living these days, we don’t have the data, we’ll look at it again in two years’ time’.

“I.e, after the election. To decide now they are going to go really tough on pension ages in the run-up to the election, the opposition could say ‘well we wouldn’t do this’.

“You then fragment off another proportion of the electorate.

“My hunch is, when they do announce a decision on this in 6-8 weeks, it will be a bit of a fudge.”

There have been reports suggesting the UK state pension age could rise to 68 sooner than had been expected.

It is currently set at 66, but will increase to 67 by 2028. The state pension age is set to rise to 68 between 2044 and 2046, but reported changes would shift this to 2034 to 2036 instead.

According to Just Group, the move would affect approximately 8.5 million workers who are nearing retirement.

It comes after the government announced a slew of pension-related measures in the Spring Statement.