Minister Donohoe admits pension hit to women is 'bonkers'

Discussion in 'Pensions' started by kaiser1, Oct 12, 2017.

  1. kaiser1

    kaiser1 Registered User

    Link here -

    While this highlights the issue for Woman specifically I think it shines a light on the pension rules for everyone who works.
    I had summer Jobs well before I began full time employment paying PSRI tax etc, so think its a little unfair that the clock starts ticking for me back then even though I would have gone to third level and been in and out of employment for a while. Now, hopefully I can continue working for quite some time to come and my average will be more than enough to qualify for a full contribition pension when I reach that age.

    But is it correct (or right) that if someone never works that they get almost the same pension as someone who has worked all their lives? Would the lady mentioned above have a higher pension if she never worked at all? (under the current rules)

    In todays work with many women working we will probably see less of this example happening in the future.

    "Over the next few years, we are going to try to move to a pension system, which takes into account the entirety of people's contributions. We're aiming to do that for around 2021."

    Hopefully this is a step in the right direction and will lean towards rewarding work rather than punishing those who start employment early.
  2. cremeegg

    cremeegg Frequent Poster

    I worked for a period after school before going to college. I did not work in college. My employer at the time never paid prsi on my earnings. When I discovered this later I thought he was a crook. I now realise he did me a favour.
    Monbretia and sidzer like this.
  3. Odea

    Odea Frequent Poster

    Would the Social Welfare even have records going back I wonder?
  4. Raskolnikov

    Raskolnikov Frequent Poster

    It's funny you should bring this up, I was thinking the exact same thing.

    I started working part-time at 15 in 1999 and had a very patch employment status for the next 9 years with lots of J contributions (not counted for the pension) but very few A contributions (these are the ones counted for the pension. For the next 10 years, I have a completely unbroken series of A contributions, ruining my average, just because I was a kid in full time education and I didn't want to be a burden on my parents.

    In my opinion, if you are in full-time education, you should receive automatic contribution credits for those period, or else the clock shouldn't start, certainly not while you're in secondary school, and really it shouldn't start when you're in third-level either.

    If people are in a similar situation, then I strongly urge you to write, or e-mail Frances Fitzgerald on this matter.
  5. Raskolnikov

    Raskolnikov Frequent Poster

    They have records going back to 1999 for me.

    If you have a account, you can check them for yourself at
  6. Raskolnikov

    Raskolnikov Frequent Poster

    Just did some calculations on my only person situation. I started work full time at 24 with no gaps since. If I work full-time continuously between now and 67, I will still not have enough contributions under the current system to get the full state pension, despite having 43 years of Class A contributions.

    On the other hand, if someone arrives into the country, starts work at 37, and works continuously until they are 67, they will get the full state pension despite having contributed 13 years Class A stamps than me.
  7. Leper

    Leper Frequent Poster

    Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm . . . .mmmm! All children of the state shall be cherished equally . . . . Not so with married women who had to or gave up their jobs to mind their children . . . .
  8. Brendan Burgess

    Brendan Burgess Founder

    The system is full of anomalies.

    My proposal that a person's PRSI is put into a fund in their own name would get around all those anomalies. The more you work, the more PRSI you put into your fund, and the bigger pension you would get.

    sidzer likes this.
  9. browtal

    browtal Frequent Poster

    A number of years ago a concession was given to women who were home with children under 12. They were allowed credit for these years. This credit was confined to a special age group. Most older women did not qualify. Surely this breaches the equality legislation?

    Also is not treating everybody equally?.
  10. browtal

    browtal Frequent Poster

    There is very little difference in the rate payed for contributory pension and the non-contributory.
    Also if there was a considerable difference would it encourage some people to seek employment who might otherwise might choose not to work.
  11. browtal

    browtal Frequent Poster

    My records go back to 1964 which they still hold
  12. newtothis

    newtothis Frequent Poster

    It's a bit off-topic, but did anyone else notice how inaccurate the reporting has been around the use of the term "bonkers"? You would think the Independent (and others) would be able to get the basic facts right: "Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe has admitted it is "bonkers and unbelievable" that women are losing out on pension payments due to a recent change in the rules.". The problem is that this, and consequently the headline, and indeed the title of this thread, is simply not true. What he actually said was that the rule that required women to give up paid employment when they got married was bonkers. That puts a completely different complexion on what was said: the headline implies the Minister is presiding over a system that he himself believes is bonkers, which isn’t the case. But hey, why let the facts get in the way of a good headline?
    Slim and mathepac like this.
  13. DeeKie

    DeeKie Frequent Poster

    That's crazy.
  14. Protocol

    Protocol Frequent Poster

    Note that the average condition can affect anybody, not just women.

    You can suffer if you start paying PRSI early, and subsequently have a less than full record.
  15. Protocol

    Protocol Frequent Poster

    The Homemakers scheme was introduced in 1994, and allows up to 20 yrs to be disregarded for pensions purposes.
  16. Wollie

    Wollie Frequent Poster

    On a related theme, I've paid PRSI throughout my working life, from 17 to 66. My wife worked solely in the home since we got married in the early 1970's. Her only entitlement to a pension when we reached 66 was as my dependent spouse. BUT - she would have to "pass" a means test in order to receive it. We could have transferred most of our joint savings into my name, but it would demean her, so we decided not to claim the benefit. As a consequence, all we get is my single person's OAP.
  17. Bronco Lane

    Bronco Lane Frequent Poster

    I suppose you have to decide if circa €124k over a 10 year period is worth demeaning yourself for.
    Can a person claim the pension after age 66? In other words if you had a change of heart or change of financial circumstances can you claim your pension at anytime past age 66? For example if children were given their inheritance early?
    Would the pension be backdated?
  18. mathepac

    mathepac Frequent Poster

    I agree. The Indo's "makey-uppy" reporting and the discussion here about something Paschal DIDN'T say is truly bonkers. More fake news and even faker discussion.
    newtothis likes this.
  19. Dardania

    Dardania Registered User

    Sounds like there's a consultation coming up on this in November - one to get the spoke in about it...
  20. Conan

    Conan Frequent Poster

    That’s cannot be correct. If you have 40plus years up to age 67 then you will easily meet the minimum of 48 contributions over your PRSI history to qualify for the full State pension. Under the current system you need an average of 48 plus contributions per annum from when you first entered the PRSI system. If your average was between 40 and 48 then you get a 98% pension.
    So I don’t understand your calculations.