How can I maximise my contributory old age pension?

rum and black

New Member
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posted previously with another question so going to post as a separate question.

My partner worked in the public service from circa 1976 to 1987 and paid a class D contribution. She then stayed at home looking after the children apart from a small amount of work during which she got about 25 A contributions. The youngest turned 12 in early 2002. Partner retrained and took up work from August 2004 until June 2005 paying an A contribution. Between June 2005 and April 2006 partner worked intermittently and signed on when not working. She received no money but was awarded credits during unemployment weeks.
In April 2006 she became fully employed and still is, and has paid an A contribution each week since April 2006. However she is finding her work mentally draining and very stressful and is unsure how long more she can continue. She is now 62. Her earliest retirement age from her job is 65 but pension wont kick in until 2024 when she is 67.
We have joint rental income on which PRSI is paid each year. Is any of this PRSI counted towards Pension contributions as I didn't notice any contributions when she got her records from the Department of Social Protection. Can they be used to enhance her entitlement to pension or if not and she leaves work should she make voluntary contributions to maximize her pension. How much would this voluntary contribution be . I think I saw somewhere that it was 500 euro per year which would be 500 x 5 which is manageable ,or is it a percentage of rental income and if so any idea what percent and will this help her with her old age contributory pension. Thanks
 

NoRegretsCoyote

Frequent Poster
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803
Is your partner not entitled to her public sector pension already at 60? It should be 11/80ths of final salary.
 
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rum and black

New Member
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3
Yes. I would have thought she should have been claiming her pension from her Class D public service fron 60.
She took an early retirement/redundancy package back then and yes I omitted to say she does have a small pension from that which she has since about 1987. What she wants to establish is how to maximise her A contribution for a full or as near to full Contributory Pension. I think this was answered in another thread indicating that she can sign for credits which we weren't aware she could do.
 

Early Riser

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641
In April 2006 she became fully employed and still is, and has paid an A contribution each week since April 2006. However she is finding her work mentally draining and very stressful and is unsure how long more she can continue. She is now 62. Her earliest retirement age from her job is 65 but pension wont kick in until 2024 when she is 67.
Your wife has a number of options (assuming she is in a public service job).

She can work until 65 and get her pension from her current job. She can also then claim Jobseekers Benefit which, after 65, is for up to 12 months - up to 66. She will get Class A credits during this. Currently, at least, there are no credits available beyond 66.

She could also retire anytime from now with a preserved pension, ie, it won't be paid until 65.

She could also retire anytime on a Cost Neutral basis, ie, the pension will be paid immediately but at an actuarially reduced level.

On either of the latter options she could also apply for Jobseekers Benefit. The actual criteria don't change after 62 (available for and seeking work) but what does change is enforcement or "activation". At most, she is likely to be denied the first 6 weeks of her claim.

While on Jobseekers she will get PRSI Class A credits. When the claim runs out (after 9 months before 65) she can remain signed on for credits.

What she can't do is just retire and sign for credits. She must first submit a claim for Jobseekers (or other benefit, if eligible).
 
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