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Welfare Reform on the Web (August 2005): Pensions - UK

Blackstone’s guide to The Pensions Act 2004

M. Jenkins and others

Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005

The Pensions Act 2004 is the most substantial change to pension law and practice since the Pensions Act 1995. The new provisions create a statutory framework for the government's proposals for pension reform and form part of a wider package of measures for restructuring the basis of state and private pension provision. The new Act also sweeps away and replaces large portions of the existing regulatory regime for pensions. The Act comes into force from April 2005 and introduces many important changes to pension regulation, including: new scheme-specific funding requirements, a new pensions regulator armed with wide powers to protect members' interests, and the introduction of a pension protection fund to meet certain benefits in the event of a scheme failure. This practical guide puts the provisions of the Act into context, and provides a clear and concise explanation of the impact of the changes introduced.

Raise pension age to 67, says Blair’s favourite think tank

T. Helm

Daily Telegraph, July 25th 2005, p.1

The state pension age will have to rise to 67, according to a report by the Institute for Public Policy. New Labour's favourite think tank says that most working people fail to realise that they will live longer than their parents. As a result they do not appreciate that they will have to work longer to finance the rising number of retired people entitled to pensions. Currently men receive the basic state pension at 65 and women at 60. The age for women will be raised to 65 between 2010 and 2020.

(See also Financial Times, July 25th 2005, p.5)

Security in pension provision: a critical analysis of UK government policy

P.J. Ring

Journal of Social Policy, vol.34, 2005, p.343-363

Drawing on the work of Anthony Giddens and Niklas Luhmann, article considers whether the Labour government's reforms of state, occupational and private pension provision in the UK are capable of delivering greater security in retirement. It concludes that the government's reforms have in fact undermined trust in the state, occupational schemes and the financial services sector as pension providers, failed to halt the decline in occupational pensions, pushed a general public lacking financial literacy into making more private provision, and increased the insecurity of savers who do not qualify for means-tested benefits.

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