Query re Irish and UK State Pension contributions

bmd1001

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I worked in UK for a few years (about 4), which means that for three years i have no Irish contributions paid and the first and last year i only have part of each of those two years stamps paid.
I have availed of the chance to buy back UK contributions to take me over the required ten year giving me a partial UK pension when i reach retirement age.
My query is, can UK national insurance stamps be used as contributions towards the Irish State pension. If so, can i still use them, even though those years form part of my contributions for partial UK pension?
Sounds greedy i know, but basically i am just trying to work out at what age i could retire and still be entitled to a full Irish State Pension and If i can use my UK national insurance stamps twice (for UK and Irish pensions) then i would be able to retire 4 years earlier as i would reach the required total stamps required of 2080 four years earlier)
 

Feemar5

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296
When are you due to retire ? There are major changes being made to pensions from 2020. At the moment you need 520 paid contributions and contributions made in EU countries can be included. You must also meet the "average contribution" The normal average rule states that you must have a yearly average of at least 10 appropriate contributions paid or credited from the year you first entered insurance or from 1953, whichever is later to the end of the tax year before you reach pension age (66). An average of 10 entitles you to a minimum pension; you need an average of 48 to get the maximum pension.
 
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bmd1001

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Hi Feemar. I'm 54 this year and wont receive the state pension until i'm 68. Currently i am not in a financial position to retire but was just trying to figure out, if i do find myself in a position in the coming years, when can i retire without affecting my receiving the Maximum state pension.
I was aware of the average of 48 contributions per year from the year you start work until the year before you reach pension age (68 in my case) which i think is extremely unfair to those of us who started work straight from school, as opposed to those who for whatever reasons (continuous eduction, rearing a family, out of the country, etc) didn't start work in Ireland until their 30's or 40's.
However, there seems to be another way of calculating. I've copied this from Citizens Information web page@-

Using the Aggregated Contributions Method, if you have 2,080 or more social insurance contributions (or 40 years of full-time employment) you will qualify for themaximum personal rate of State Pension (Contributory). Mar 28, 2019

Using the average 48 contributions from year I started work to year before retirement would mean i need 2352 contributions for the maximum pension
But the above Aggregated Contributions method would only require 2080 for the maximum rate of State pension

However, because i worked in the UK for 4ish years i have 3 full years with no Irish contributions and 2 partial years (first and last years working in UK). This is why i was wondering if i could use these towards my Irish pension as well as my UK pension, as it would mean i could retire four years earlier without affecting my maximum rate Irish pension. However, i suspect i can only use these contributions for either UK or Ireland and not both
 

Conan

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The current “average contribution” calculation is due to change shortly. Originality the change was due to happen in 2020, but I now expect this to be 2022. The proposed new formula is expected to be 1/40th of the State Pension for each year of contribution (max 2080 contributions). Service in the UK can be added to your Irish record, or alternatively you might claim two smaller pensions (assuming you satisfy the minimum requirements in the UK).
 

jpd

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1,701
It's rather more complicated than that.
Under current EU rules, the Irish Social Security will
1. calculate your Irish pension entitlement based only on your irish contributions - say this is € X per week
2. calculate your Irish pension entitlement based on all your contributions in the EU - so including your UK contributions - say this comes to € Y per week. They will then calculate how much of this amount is to be paid by Ireland based on the contributions paid in Ireland compared to the total contributions paid in the EU - this will be some fraction of € Y per week

You will be entitled to the larger of the two amounts - so € X based only on your Irish contributions or some fraction of € Y
 

Feemar5

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The rules regarding using contributions paid in other EU states Is governed by EU regulations so if the UK leaves the EU who knows what will happen. At the moment you can get two pensions, if you have enough contributions you can get a full Irish contributory pension and a lesser UK one depending on your contributions.
 

Lisboa

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However, because i worked in the UK for 4ish years i have 3 full years with no Irish contributions and 2 partial years (first and last years working in UK). This is why i was wondering if i could use these towards my Irish pension as well as my UK pension, as it would mean i could retire four years earlier without affecting my maximum rate Irish pension. However, i suspect i can only use these contributions for either UK or Ireland and not both
No I don't believe you can use the same contribution twice. I think the correct term which I've read in some legislation preventing this is 'overlapping'.

And you can't transfer contributions from one state to another. So Ireland will pay your Irish pro-rata amount, and the UK will pay your UK pro-rata amount.

You're 54 this year, worked straight out of school (from age 16?) and minus 5 years due to the UK. So you probably have 33 full Irish years? And the new pension reform is rumored to be pro-ratad up to 40 years. So another 7 years may be enough for your entitlement to the full Irish.

I wonder myself how the partial years will work in the new system. There may be a minimum earnings requirement to acquire the full year (I think in the UK it's around £6k-7k), so if you earned over a certain amount, or paid over a certain amount of PRSI in that year, will you be credited that year; and will the government let people make a contribution to top-up a partial year to obtain that full year if they didn't pay enough PRSI that year; who knows at this time.

The rules regarding using contributions paid in other EU states Is governed by EU regulations so if the UK leaves the EU who knows what will happen. At the moment you can get two pensions, if you have enough contributions you can get a full Irish contributory pension and a lesser UK one depending on your contributions.
I don't envisage Brexit having any affect on this really. Ireland already has social security bi-lateral agreements with a few non-EU countries (Canada, USA, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Korea).

On the other side, Brexit may even be good for Irish citizens residing in the UK; going forward they may be allowed to make voluntary contribution to top up their future Irish pension entitlement.
 

bmd1001

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15
The current “average contribution” calculation is due to change shortly. Originality the change was due to happen in 2020, but I now expect this to be 2022. The proposed new formula is expected to be 1/40th of the State Pension for each year of contribution (max 2080 contributions). Service in the UK can be added to your Irish record, or alternatively you might claim two smaller pensions (assuming you satisfy the minimum requirements in the UK).
Hi Conan, is what you are referring to the "Aggregated Contribution Method" I mentioned above or is this something different? Seems the same to me but i might be missing something. If it is the same, it seems from Welfare.ie that it is already in place.
 

bmd1001

Registered User
Messages
15
It's rather more complicated than that.
Under current EU rules, the Irish Social Security will
1. calculate your Irish pension entitlement based only on your irish contributions - say this is € X per week
2. calculate your Irish pension entitlement based on all your contributions in the EU - so including your UK contributions - say this comes to € Y per week. They will then calculate how much of this amount is to be paid by Ireland based on the contributions paid in Ireland compared to the total contributions paid in the EU - this will be some fraction of € Y per week

You will be entitled to the larger of the two amounts - so € X based only on your Irish contributions or some fraction of € Y
Hi Jpd, this has confused me. Are you saying that you just get one pension regardless of whether you paid contributions in both Ireland and UK? and that the Irish Pension Section then decide, based on what contributions you paid in either country, who (Ireland or UK) pays what portion of your one pension? This is different to what i have heard from many and i have also seen media articles about buying back UK contributions to entitle you to a UK pension as well as an Irish pension.
 

bmd1001

Registered User
Messages
15
The rules regarding using contributions paid in other EU states Is governed by EU regulations so if the UK leaves the EU who knows what will happen. At the moment you can get two pensions, if you have enough contributions you can get a full Irish contributory pension and a lesser UK one depending on your contributions.
Hi Feemar5
while i guess there are no cast iron guarantees that things wont change in the future, UK pensions to Irish seem to be protected for the moment even if there is a no deal Brexit. See link to article in Independent.ie on it

 

bmd1001

Registered User
Messages
15
No I don't believe you can use the same contribution twice. I think the correct term which I've read in some legislation preventing this is 'overlapping'.

And you can't transfer contributions from one state to another. So Ireland will pay your Irish pro-rata amount, and the UK will pay your UK pro-rata amount.

You're 54 this year, worked straight out of school (from age 16?) and minus 5 years due to the UK. So you probably have 33 full Irish years? And the new pension reform is rumored to be pro-ratad up to 40 years. So another 7 years may be enough for your entitlement to the full Irish.

I wonder myself how the partial years will work in the new system. There may be a minimum earnings requirement to acquire the full year (I think in the UK it's around £6k-7k), so if you earned over a certain amount, or paid over a certain amount of PRSI in that year, will you be credited that year; and will the government let people make a contribution to top-up a partial year to obtain that full year if they didn't pay enough PRSI that year; who knows at this time.



I don't envisage Brexit having any affect on this really. Ireland already has social security bi-lateral agreements with a few non-EU countries (Canada, USA, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Korea).

On the other side, Brexit may even be good for Irish citizens residing in the UK; going forward they may be allowed to make voluntary contribution to top up their future Irish pension entitlement.
Hi Lisboa
I think you are probably right that i cannot use my UK contributions "twice" - it was just wishful thinking on my part. As i said, even if could retire now without it affecting my full pension, i am not in a financial position to support myself for the intervening years, so i will have to keep turning up for work every day for the moment, save a few bob and hope that by the time i have worked up the 2080 contributions (about 7 years) i will have enough squirreled away to support myself until State Pension kicks in :)

And i am hoping you are right about Brexit not affecting UK pensions to Irish, i copied a link to Feemar5 above regarding a legally binding agreement between the two governments agreeing to continue paying out on pensions
 

jpd

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Messages
1,701
Hi Jpd, this has confused me. Are you saying that you just get one pension regardless of whether you paid contributions in both Ireland and UK? and that the Irish Pension Section then decide, based on what contributions you paid in either country, who (Ireland or UK) pays what portion of your one pension? This is different to what i have heard from many and i have also seen media articles about buying back UK contributions to entitle you to a UK pension as well as an Irish pension.
There is no centralised EU calculation. Each country where you have you have contributions will do it's own calculation based on your contributions in that country and other EU states. The EU has defined the overall process but each country applies its own rules - are contributions based on weeks, amounts paid or some combination of the two.

You can buy back years in the UK to increase your UK pension - this may or may not affect your entitlement to an Irish pension as well. As always, the devil is in the detail and believe me, there is plenty of detail. The UK calculations are mind-boggling especial if you have contributions back in the 70s and 80s when they had contracted out and contracted in schemes
 

bmd1001

Registered User
Messages
15
There is no centralised EU calculation. Each country where you have you have contributions will do it's own calculation based on your contributions in that country and other EU states. The EU has defined the overall process but each country applies its own rules - are contributions based on weeks, amounts paid or some combination of the two.

You can buy back years in the UK to increase your UK pension - this may or may not affect your entitlement to an Irish pension as well. As always, the devil is in the detail and believe me, there is plenty of detail. The UK calculations are mind-boggling especial if you have contributions back in the 70s and 80s when they had contracted out and contracted in schemes
I am in the process of buying back years to bring me over the required ten years to receive a partial UK pension. Now i am worried that this may affect my Irish Pension which would make the exercise futile. Am i understanding you correctly that even if i have the full 2080 contributions paid in Ireland to entitle me to the maximum Irish pension, the State can reduce my Irish pension because i am eligible to receive a partial UK pension?
 

jpd

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1,701
No, you get the pension you are entitled to in each country - they do not adjust your pension because you have a pension in another EU country. Depending on the rules of each country, you could end up getting full pensions from two or more

As for Brexit, we all know states never renege on agreements ;)
 

Conan

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966
Hi Conan, is what you are referring to the "Aggregated Contribution Method" I mentioned above or is this something different? Seems the same to me but i might be missing something. If it is the same, it seems from Welfare.ie that it is already in place.
The current system is a “totals and average” basis, ie you must have an average of 48 contributions per annum over your time in the PRSI system (from when you first entered the workforce until the Dec before your 66th birthday). Originally it was proposed to change this calculation method in 2020 to a “total contribution approach (TCA)”. This would require 2080 contributions (equivalent to 40 years) to get the max pension, so in effect a 1/40th for each year of contribution. However it now appears that this will not be introduced until 2022 at the earliest.
 

bmd1001

Registered User
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15
No, you get the pension you are entitled to in each country - they do not adjust your pension because you have a pension in another EU country. Depending on the rules of each country, you could end up getting full pensions from two or more

As for Brexit, we all know states never renege on agreements ;)
Phew! Unfortunately, my private pensions are useless hence jumping at the chance to buy back years in UK - every little helps!

Fingers crossed they don't renage, but it's a chance i'm willing to take in the hope of being slightly better off in my dotage ... :)
 
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NoRegretsCoyote

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803
I made about 50 UK NI contributions when I worked there in my 20s for a year. Highly unlikely I'll ever work in the UK again.

This will get me no pension entitlements at all in the UK as I won't have 10 years contributions which is the minimum.

Can I 'transfer' these NI contributions to my PRSI record to help me with Irish state pension eligibility in due course?
 

Saavy99

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164
I made about 50 UK NI contributions when I worked there in my 20s for a year. Highly unlikely I'll ever work in the UK again.

This will get me no pension entitlements at all in the UK as I won't have 10 years contributions which is the minimum.

Can I 'transfer' these NI contributions to my PRSI record to help me with Irish state pension eligibility in due course?

You need a minimum of three years national insurance contributions paid in the UK before you can begin paying voluntary contributions.
 

Gorteen

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31
Is there anyone who can give professional advice on this issue? I worked in U.K. for 12 years and have heard you can pay a lump sum to U.K. authorities to increase the amount of old age pension.
 
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