Reader’s Question – What happens to my deferred State Pension if I die?

3 min Read Published: 16 Jun 2011

Reader Question:

I have a deferred State pension of 3 years. If I died would my husband get the whole amount of my deferred pension?

My response:

For the benefit of other readers I will just recap on state pension deferral.

If you choose to defer taking a state pension in general (although there are some exceptions), when you eventually decide to start drawing it, as long as you have put off claiming for at least 5 weeks, you will receive either a higher State Pension (than you would have got if you hadn’t deferred) or alternatively you can choose to receive a lump sum, assuming you have given up your State Pension continuously for at least 12 months.

In monetary terms deferring a Basic State Pension for a year, for example, will boost your eventual pension by 10.4%. If, however, you chose to receive a lump sum it will equate to the amount of pension you would have received plus interest.

In answer to your question what will happen if you were to die, there are numerous scenarios that could apply depending on whether or not you had put in a claim for your pension before death, as well as the period of deferment.

Also if your husband is under state pension age at the age of your death  and remarries before state pension age then he would have no claim to either an extra state pension or lump sum deferral amount.

The DWP's State Pension Deferral guide covers all the possible scenarios in detail (see pages 36 and 58).

But to give you one scenario, if you were to die tomorrow, and as you have put off claiming your pension for more than 12 months, then your husband should be entitled to choose to receive up to 100% of the extra State pension/lump-sum you had earned by deferring.

I hope that helps

Best wishes

Damien

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