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Pension credits

Pension credits

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  • Advice

    What is pension credit?

    Pension Credit is an income-related benefit aimed at people over state pension age, offering a top-up to their income. Savings credit is only available to people who reached State Pension age before 6 April 2016. You do not pay tax on Pension Credit



    To be eligible for Guarantee Credit, you must Live in the UK or Northern Ireland; and have reached State Pension age. Calculating State Pension can be tricky, but you can check by using the Government State Pension Calculator. On the other hand, to be eligible for Savings Credit, you must live in England, Scotland or Wales; and have reached State Pension Age before 6 April 2016.

    If you’re in a couple, you and your partner can receive Pension credit if you have both reached State Pension age or if one of you is receiving Housing Benefit for people over State Pension age. 

    It is made up of 2 parts, Guarantee Credit and Savings Credit (rates as of May 2021).


    Guarantee Credit tops up your weekly income if it is below:

    • £173.75 per week for single people; or 
    • £265.20 per week for couples.


    Savings Credit is extra money for individuals who have some savings or higher income than the basic state pension. You may receive up to:

    • £13.87 per week if you are single, or 
    • £15.62 per week if you are a couple


    How much pension credit can I get?

    Single person      Guaranteed credit, per week = £173.75

                                   Savings credit per week = £13.97


    Couple                  Guaranteed credit, per week = £265.2

                                   Savings credit per week = £15.62

    Note: if you are a carer, have a severe disability, are responsible for a child or young person, or have certain housing costs, you may be eligible to receive more.


    If you’re responsible for a child or young person

    If you are responsible for a child or young person. You may be eligible for the ‘child addition’, which will increase your Pension Credit. The child or young person must normally live with you and be under the age of 20. If the child or young person is aged between 16 and 20 then they must be in approved training, such as Foundation Apprenticeships or on a course of non-advanced education (for example, GCSEs or A levels). If they are in education, they must be attending for more than 12 hours a week on average. You cannot receive the child addition if you get Tax Credits.


    How do I claim pension credit?

    You can start your application for Pension Credit up to four months before you reach State Pension age. If you claim late, it will only be backdated for three months. You will need the following at hand when you begin your application:

    • Your National Insurance Number;
    • Information about your income, investments and savings; and
    • Your bank account details.


    Applying by Post

    To apply by post simply call the claim line and request a form.


    Applying Online

    You can use the online service if you have already claimed your State Pension and there are no children or young people included in your claim.


    Pension Credit if you leave Great Britain:

    Your entitlement to Pension Credit may change if you leave United Kingdoms for any period. You cannot get Pension Credit if you leave the United Kingdom permanently. 

    You can contact the Pensions Service if you have any further questions. 



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