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French pensions


Gardener

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If you haven't yet reached retirement age you may still be able to make voluntary payments to the UK system to make your total up to what you need.

I don't know if you can make similar payments to the french system. I could not do so in Spain.

You can (could?) make these even whilst paying into another country's system. I managed to make a total of 8 years' UK voluntary contributions, of which 5 were back payments (the maximum allowed) before reaching retirement age.

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[quote user="woolybanana"]It is peak begging time, so Norman was in a rush to catch the late season tourists, though I hear that he is being out begged by Romanian professionals and that his income has been reduced as a result.[/quote]

No, he is wilier  than that.

He lets out rooms to them and gets the CAF to pay...

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I know someone who didn't have enough payments in the UK from years ago and inconsequence the amount paid in the UK and the french pensions never came to enough trimestres. The CNAV more or less halved what would have been the entitlement in France for both the state pensions and the private ones too which follow the state pension rules on many things, although not all.

 

You can make up payments in France as you can in the UK. I did look into it at one point, but for us there was no point in doing so.

 

 

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Right thanks everyone. My retirement age is still quite a few years away so no dire rush to get this sorted but something I have started to give some thought to.

I was thinking of topping up my UK contributions as I will have less years to top up than with a French pension. It still makes financial sense afaik to go that route unless I am missing something really vital

eg the fact that I had no idea that when the time is right I would have to claim through France for my pension.

Thank you Norman for your kind offer to help
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You'll just have to look it up closer to the time. If you were born on or after 1954, then you will likely be getting your UK pension at 66. However, if you have a french entitlement, then you will be able to apply for that far earlier, and if you have a 'longue' carriere, then 60, for the time being, is still the age.

All this info is on the CNAV and The Pension Service web site. Incidentally did you know that you only need to top up to 30 years to get a full UK pension these days, the trick ofcourse, will be staying alive until the age of 66 or older to get it, won't it![blink]

 

 

And living out of France and getting a french pension means that every year, four and a half  months before the pension is due to 'renew', they want 'proof of life'. And it strikes me that to ask for such a thing just longer than half way through the year is nonsense. Especially as they cannot be bothered to do their jobs efficiently where payments are made in the first place.

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It's also difficult to plan far ahead when they keep changing the rules and officials give out incorrect information..

On a visit to England in about 1978 I enquired about back payments in the local Employment Office (whatever it was called at the time).

I had long ago lost those pre-1975 cards you had to stick stamps on, so had no proof of what I’d previously paid.

(Incidentally, now I think about it, I think they may base pre-1975 credits on the employment history you provide when you complete the pension application. I certainly wasn’t asked for my old cards)  Does anyone here know what happened to the old cards once they were completed?

I was told that I would have to pay full contributions for all the years I had missed.

I queried this, saying I thought that I could just pay a portion of the full contribution, but they insisted that was not so, so I dismissed the idea as far too expensive.

It wasn't until I was a couple of years from retiring that I found this was probably totally wrong; even at the time I think class 3 payments existed.

It’s not just France that has incompetent people giving out information and advice – so ask several different people before you believe anything!

At the same time an accountant advising on tax for non residents sold me a life insurance/investment policy that I found three years later was only for residents.

I could neither add to the amount invested nor withdraw what I’d paid in. I finally got the proceeds when I retired – the magnificent amount of £170.77 per year.

I was able to add 8 years' payments for my OAP, but am still way short of a full UK pension, which needed 44 years contributions at the time.

A couple of years later the qualifying years for a full pension was decreased to 30, but this had no effect on existing pensions based on 44 years.

This article may be useful, but the goalposts are moving all the time http://britishexpat.com/resources/insurance/national-insurance-contributions-for-british-expats-the-facts/

 

Edit: Correct number of qualifying years to 44.

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Nomoss the actually cards with the stamps on should have been registered with the NI contributions office.  We were still using stamps, actually rubber stamped the cards quite a lot of the time, although I remember seeing proper stamps too. That was in 1968 when I started work in a wages department.

I would imagine that this was how everywhere worked then, and myself and husband's 'stamps' from that time, the 1960's have shown up on our NI contribution record.

 

 

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