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Back You are here: Home News Mish Mash 2011 Budget Leaves Pensioners Out In The Cold

2011 Budget Leaves Pensioners Out In The Cold

With UK Chancellor George Osborne unveiling this year's budget last week, UK citizens have been eager to learn how the budget will affect them.

However, an important topic was largely ignored- the subject of UK expat retirees who have frozen pensions.

The plight of the expat pensioner is a serious one. Around 500,000 UK pensioners who live abroad including Bulgaria are lumbered with frozen pensions. The frozen pension leaves expat pensioners with the rate at which they started drawing their pension, and in the worst cases some are given just £6 per week.

There are a roughly 150 countries that the UK does not have a reciprocal social security agreement with, and UK expats who live in these countries are the ones that suffer. Currently there are thought to be around 400,000 expat Britons locked with the same rate they had when they left.

The battle against the frozen pensions has been arduous, with countless court cases and campaigns proving to so far be futile. Alongside these campaigns, a troop of expat veterans have joined the argument, threatening to actually return the medals they earned while serving England if the pensions stay frozen.

The matter is gaining more importance as more and more UK pensioners choose to retire abroad. With elderly citizens costing the UK billions each year in care costs, experts suggest that unfreezing the pensions is vital if the UK government is to reduce its deficit, and that more should be done to encourage people to retire abroad, as opposed to discouraging them.

With all this in mind it was thought that Chancellor Osborne would address the situation in his Budget but sadly it was completely ignored.
It is now down to groups like the International Consortium of British Pensioners (ICBP) to continue to fight in the hope that soon the matter will be resolved in a manner that will appease the thousands of disgruntled retirees, and at the same time give peace of mind to people who are thinking of retiring abroad.

 

For further information on this topic or any other expat financial matters please visit: Expat & Offshore