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State pension to increase by up to £289 in 2022

Pensioners' benefit will rise by 3.1% thanks to a temporary 'double lock'

State pension to increase by up to £289 in 2022

More than 10 million state pensioners will receive a pay rise of 3.1% from April 2022, in line with the inflation rate – which could represent a boost of up to £288.60 for the year.

The 3.1% rise was confirmed after the Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed today that CPI inflation measured that amount in September 2021, down slightly from 3.2% in August.

The state pension payment is protected by a ‘double lock’ this time, which means that next April it would increase by either September’s rate of inflation or a guaranteed minimum of 2.5% – whichever was higher. The ‘triple lock’ has been suspended for a year due to high earnings growth following the pandemic.

Here, Which? reveals how much the state pension will pay next year, as well as what will happen to the additional state pension and final salary pensions.


How much will the state pension pay in 2022?

Millions of recipients of the state pension will see their payments keep up with inflation and receive a 3.1% state pension rise next year.

The inflation-linked hike will exceed the guaranteed minimum rise of 2.5% that was applied to 2021-22 payments.

Pensioners who are entitled to the full new single-tier state pension will get £185.15 a week from 6 April 2022, up from £179.60.

The change means pensioners will be up to £288.60 better off by the end of the 2022-23 tax year, taking their total income to £9,627.80.

Pensioners that reached state pension age before April 2016 and receive the basic state pension will see their weekly pension payments rise from £137.60 to £141.85 next year.

This amounts to a £221 pay rise in 2022-23, with income rising to £7,376.20 a year.

New state pension (weekly) New state pension (annual) Basic state pension (weekly) Basic state pension (annual)
6 April 2021 to 5 April 2022 £179.60 £9,339.20 £137.60 £7,155.20
6 April 2022 to 5 April 2023 £185.15* £9,627.80 £141.85* £7,376.20
Change £5.55 £288.60 £4.25 £221

*Figures rounded to the nearest 5p.

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How do the double and triple lock guarantees work?

State pension payments are usually protected by a triple lock guarantee.

This means payments are increased each year by whichever rate is higher out of CPI inflation for September, average earnings growth (as of July) or 2.5%.

However, the triple lock has been reduced to a double lock for 2022-23 to address a quirk in wages growth following the Covid-19 pandemic.

The earnings element has been suspended for a year as a swift recovery in wages in the wake of coronavirus would have qualified pensioners for an 8.3% hike in their state pensions.

This would have meant an increase in the basic state pension to £149 per week. The single-tier new state pension would have reached £194.50 per week.

Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Thérèse Coffey has said that it is temporary measure is to stop pensioners ‘unfairly benefiting from a statistical anomaly’. The triple lock is expected to return the following year.

The table below shows how the state pension has increased since 2012.

Tax year September inflation (CPI) Average earnings Guaranteed minimum Which part of the triple lock was used to raise the state pension?
6 April 2012 5.2% 2.7% 2.5% Inflation (CPI)
6 April 2013 2.2% 1.5% 2.5% Guaranteed minimum
6 April 2014 2.7% 1.2% 2.5% Inflation (CPI)
6 April 2015 1.2% 0.6% 2.5% Guaranteed minimum
6 April 2016 -0.1% 2.9% 2.5% Average earnings
6 April 2017 1% 2.4% 2.5% Guaranteed minimum
6 April 2018 3% 2.3% 2.5% Inflation (CPI)
6 April 2019 2.4% 2.6% 2.5% Average earnings
6 April 2020 1.7% 3.9% 2.5% Average earnings
6 April 2021 0.5% -1% 2.5% Guaranteed minimum
6 April 2022 3.1% n/a 2.5% Inflation (CPI)

How much additional state pension will I get?

If you reached state pension age before April 2016, the state pension you receive is made up of two amounts – the basic state pension and an additional state pension.

The additional state pension isn’t linked to the triple lock guarantee and instead increases according to CPI inflation each year.

The amount you get depends on the number of National Insurance contributions (NICs) you made before you retired, your earnings, whether you contracted out and if you topped up your basic state pension. But if you receive any additional state pension, you will see a rise of 3.1% from 6 April 2022.

If you reached state pension age after April 2016, you’ll be eligible for the new single-tier state pension, which is currently £179.60 and will increase to £185.15 for 2022-23.

You may earn more than this if you have built up some additional state pension – known as your ‘protected payment’. This will also rise in line with September’s CPI inflation, so you’ll see a 3.1% increase from 6 April 2022.

Find out more: state second pension and SERPs explained

The rise in public sector final salary schemes

The September CPI inflation figure of 3.1% will also determine how much public sector (eg NHS, teachers’ and civil service schemes) final salary pensions rise by next year for those in receipt of pension payments or deferred members.

Some active members of public sector pensions do still get annual increases more than the CPI rate. This is outlined each year in the so-called ‘Treasury Orders’.

Scheme regulations for newer public pensions stipulate teachers receive an increase of CPI plus 1.6% (4.7%), NHS workers CPI plus 1.5% (4.6%) and those in the police CPI plus 1.25% (4.35%). Judicial, local government pension scheme and civil service pensions only receive a CPI increase.

How to check your state pension

The state pension is a benefit paid by the government to those who have reached state pension age.

The amount you get depends on how many NICs you’ve made during your working life.

You need at least 35 qualifying years of contributions to qualify for the full new state pension and at least 10 years’ worth to receive anything at all.

If you reached retirement age before April 2016, you’ll need 30 years of contributions to get the full basic state pension.

For anyone who hasn’t yet reached state pension age, you can use an online government tool to check your state pension forecast, which will tell you how much you can get, when you can start receiving payments and whether you’re able to increase it.

Find out more: your state pension forecast explained

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