State benefits, pensions and related manuals

We have links to information from a variety of sources relating to state benefits, pensions and related manuals.  To make it easier to find we've put it all on this page.

Child benefit

In certain circumstances, receiving the child benefit can result in a tax charge. This article looks at ways to reduce or eliminate the charge.

Contracting out

Since 6 April 2012, it has not been possible to contract out of the State Second Pension (S2P) using a money purchase or appropriate personal pension/stakeholder plan.  Since 6 April 2016, it has not been possible to contract out of S2P using a defined benefit scheme.

Guidance on charging for residential accommodation

Local Authorities may charge for the care they provide or arrange in residential care homes. The level of financial support they will give for this care can be affected by income provided, or that could be provided, from a pension plan.

England & Wales -  Care and support statutory guidance

Northern Ireland - Guidance on Charging for Residential Accommodation

Scotland - Charging for Residential Accommodation Guidance

HMRC manuals

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) produce a number of manuals for their staff. The guidance contained in these manuals is not comprehensive nor will it provide a definitive answer in every case.

HMRC newsletters

Periodically HMRC issue Pension Schemes Newsletters. These cover almost anything to do with pensions and contain useful information.

Pension Credit

Department of Work & Pensions (DWP) factsheet and guide on Pension Credit benefit.

State pensions

Basic State Pension

The basic State Pension has been replaced by the new state pension. People who reached State Pension age before 6 April 2016 will receive the Basic State Pension.

New State Pension

The new State Pension replaced the basic State Pension in April 2016. Existing benefits will be protected.

State pension calculators - GOV.UK

State Pension factsheets

The DWP have produced a number of new State Pension factsheets.

State Pensions for women

Women born before 6 April 1953 may be able to claim an increase to their basic State Pension based on their spouse’s or civil partner’s contribution record.

State Pension guide

When the new state pension was introduced for those reaching pension age from 6th April 2016 it was intended to be much simpler than the system it replaced. In this guide we aim to explain how the new pension works, and how much you could expect to receive.


Personal pensions

Personal pensions statistics - HMRC

This contains information on personal pensions, based on data pension schemes are required to report to HMRC.

It is divided into 4 sections:

section 1 - an introduction to the different types of pensions and their tax treatment
section 2 - commentary and analysis of the main trends in personal pension contributions and tax relief
section 3 - detailed statistical tables:

  • PEN1 Personal Pensions, Retirement Annuity Contracts and Free Standing Additional Voluntary Contributions: By type of contribution.
  • PEN2 Personal Pensions (including stakeholder pensions): Scheme members' annual contributions.
  • PEN 2.1 Non-Stakeholder Personal Pensions: Scheme members' annual contributions.
  • PEN2.2 Stakeholder Personal Pensions: Scheme members' annual contributions - Numbers of members and value of contributions by type of scheme as reported to HMRC by providers for the year.
  • PEN 3 Personal pensions: Estimated number of individuals making or receiving contributions and average contribution by status.
  • PEN 4 Personal pensions: Estimated number of individuals making or receiving contributions by gender and age.
  • PEN 5 Personal pensions: Estimate number of individuals making or receiving contributions by country and region.
  • PEN6 Cost of Registered Pension Scheme Tax Relief: Occupational schemes in the public and private sectors and individuals' personal pensions.

section 4 - details of the data used in this publication and the estimation methodologies

Office for National Statistics - Pensions, savings and investments 

Pensions, savings and investments

State, private, occupational and workplace pensions, including pension trends that draws together data from other government departments and organisations.

Pension flexibility statistics

Flexible payments from pensions

Number and value of flexible payments made from pensions since April 2015. 

Workplace pensions

Workplace pension statistics - Office for National Statistics

Individuals' pensions linked to their workplace, including defined ambition, defined benefit and defined contribution schemes.

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