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People who previously worked in the UK may be able to buy back pension years – Ring

2nd May 2023 - Michael Ring TD

People who previously worked in the UK should explore the possibility of buying back pension years if they need them, a Fine Gael TD has advised.


Deputy Michael Ring said: “Large numbers of Irish people went to the UK, particularly in the 1980s, to work.


“Again, after the financial crash in 2008, large numbers travelled overseas to find employment. These people were instrumental in building vital pieces of infrastructure in the UK during those times. A lot of these people returned to Ireland not knowing that they could claim their UK pension.


“People in this situation could now benefit from their time in the UK due to a temporary concession which is now available; Irish people who worked for at least three consecutive years in the UK and paid National Insurance stamps can now buy back as many as sixteen extra years to their UK pension. Previously, this was six years. This could be a very welcome move for some people.


“To qualify for this, you must have 10 qualifying years on your National Insurance Record to receive a minimum UK pension. If you are seeking a full pension from the UK, which is €210 per week, you need thirty-five years.


“However, it has been decided that if you have not worked the required number of years to reach the minimum 10 years, you can now make those voluntary contributions to your record, as long as you have three years’ contributions.


“People have up until 31st July 2023  to pay those voluntary contributions for gaps between 2006 and 2016. After this deadline passes, they will only be able to buy six years’ worth of contributions.


“The cost of buying back the years depends on which category the HM Revenue and Customs puts you in to. There is class two and class three. Class two costs £163.80 for each pension year and Class three costs £824.20 for each pension year.


“This is a good opportunity and I am advising and encouraging people who may qualify to consider this buy back of contributions,” Deputy Ring concluded.




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