3 Million elderly people living in economic difficulty, whilst billions of unclaimed pension benefits go astray.
A study by Age UK, revealed that one in four of the older generation are experiencing economic difficulties. Hundreds of thousands of pensioners have not been able to pay regular bills, or keep their homes suitably warm, whilst more than £3.5 billion in unclaimed pension benefits is going unclaimed each year.
Age UK explained that, despite huge numbers of the elderly being in financial predicaments, crazy amounts of benefits money is going unclaimed on a yearly basis. The charity believes that more needs to be done to help pensioners claim the money that they’re eligible for.
An eye-opening survey of more than 1,300 people aged over of 65 implied that;
- 572,600 are unable to keep their homes suitably warm.
- 286,300 can’t pay regular bills.
- 708,000 struggle to keep their homes damp free.
- 945,100 would not be able to replace a cooker if it was damaged.
- 1,299,600 have no access to a car and can’t afford taxi fees.
800,000 pensioners are living in ‘material deprivation’ and are unable to even afford the essentials, according to recent Government statistics. During 2016, the number of pensioners living under the poverty line reached 1.9 million.
Those who are in their latter years, single, or renting property were categorised as the most likely to be at risk of poverty.
“19% of all 80-84 year olds and 21% of over 85s are in poverty, opposed to the smaller 13% of 65-69 year olds.”
“20% of single pensioners are living in poverty, whilst only 13% of couples.”
Another investigation reported that £3.5 billion worth of pension credits and housing benefit are not being claimed by the elderly. What’s more is the opinion that the overall figure of unclaimed pension benefits is likely to be far bigger.
The most common problem is that people don’t realise that the benefits are available to them. Even if people have heard of the pensions credit, they tend to think that it won’t apply to them.
“People often just don’t like to ask for help. They feel there’s something not quite right about claiming benefits.”
Online applications are being encouraged for council tax support. Whilst this is ideal for millennials, pensioners could struggle with the digital technology, and many won’t have access to a computer or the internet.
An uneducated assumption is that our older generations are financially comfortable, however this data proves that viewpoint to be way off the mark.
If you think that you might possess a pot of unclaimed money, or would like to discuss how to claim your benefits, please visit monimine.com.
Josh Cousens – Monimine.