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Old Oct 11th 2017, 5:46 pm   #1
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Smile EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

I am approaching pension age and investigating how I can put my fragmented pension payments together having worked in 3 countries. (UK, Germany, Netherlands).

In the UK I worked about 6.5 years, followed by 2 in Germany.
The Netherlands part is not a problem.

According to EU rules (or so I have read) it's possible to add these years (where I didn't fully qualify for a pension in the particular state) to my NL pension (AOW) and top it up with those years or payments from the applicable states.

Does anyone have any experience of this kind, and have you succeeded?
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Old Oct 11th 2017, 7:09 pm   #2
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Default Re: EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

If you know your UK National Insurance number, you can check your UK pension on line from this link. Not sure about the bit about adding it to your AOW, I think it just gets paid from the UK (you're also entitled to an S1 form for your medical insurance).
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Old Oct 11th 2017, 7:22 pm   #3
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Default Re: EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

S1 I'm not sure about...already have Dutch cover so that's not the issue..just how to glue all the bits together..

PS: Thanks for the link!!

Last edited by calman014; Oct 11th 2017 at 8:25 pm.
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Old Oct 11th 2017, 7:48 pm   #4
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Default Re: EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

Quote:
Originally Posted by calman014 View Post
S1 I'm not sure about...already have Dutch cover so that's not the issue..just how to glue all the bits together..
Not sure if it's possible to get them in one place; if you manage it, please let me know.

At the moment, I know I can't get my Forces Pension moved to Holland with my AOW; when I asked, I was told it was because all UK Government pensions are paid in the UK for tax reasons. They will pay it into a Dutch bank account though (which is a recent change).
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Old Oct 11th 2017, 8:55 pm   #5
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Default Re: EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

As far as I understood it, you could get your UK state pension paid out from the UK and your AOW paid out from here.

You need 10 yrs of NI contribs in UK to qualify for it, but working abroad years in EEA will count to that threshold. though you would only get payouts worth 6.5 years (probably 7 if you paid enough NI in the half year).
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Old Oct 11th 2017, 9:02 pm   #6
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Default Re: EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

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Originally Posted by StevieLW View Post
As far as I understood it, you could get your UK state pension paid out from the UK and your AOW paid out from here.

You need 10 yrs of NI contribs in UK to qualify for it, but working abroad years in EEA will count to that threshold. though you would only get payouts worth 6.5 years (probably 7 if you paid enough NI in the half year).
Of you're still essential than retirement age you can pay up to seven years additional contributions in the UK, potentially (on request/application, if accepted) at the Class 2 rate, which is only around £143/yr, so cheap as chips.

Six years of arrears, plus the current year's contribution is just a squeak over £1,000, and the rate of return in terms of increased pension payouts means you only have to draw your pension for about six months to get your money back.
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Old Oct 11th 2017, 9:33 pm   #7
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Default Re: EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

According to EU rules you can link different periods of entitlement together.
I've managed to establish my UK entitlement so far.

Germany now has a 5 year minimum qualifying period (used to be 10) but my 2 years there can be linked to my UK or later NL entitlements in order to recuperate what I had paid in.

In theory the EU rules state that you apply in your country of residence and mention periods of employment in other EEA states, and the 'national authority' will chase it all up for you and make sure you get what you are entitled to..hmmmm..doesn't sound too reliable to me..

Anyway I will keep at it and see what I come up with and how (and from where) it will be paid.

PS: One loophole to watch out for if you have a forces pension, it may be reduced if you also have entitlement to a regular UK old age pension.

Last edited by calman014; Oct 11th 2017 at 9:37 pm.
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Old Oct 12th 2017, 9:20 am   #8
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Default Re: EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

Quote:
Originally Posted by calman014 View Post
According to EU rules you can link different periods of entitlement together.
I've managed to establish my UK entitlement so far.

Germany now has a 5 year minimum qualifying period (used to be 10) but my 2 years there can be linked to my UK or later NL entitlements in order to recuperate what I had paid in.

In theory the EU rules state that you apply in your country of residence and mention periods of employment in other EEA states, and the 'national authority' will chase it all up for you and make sure you get what you are entitled to..hmmmm..doesn't sound too reliable to me..

Anyway I will keep at it and see what I come up with and how (and from where) it will be paid.

PS: One loophole to watch out for if you have a forces pension, it may be reduced if you also have entitlement to a regular UK old age pension.
Thanks for that; really useful. With regards to Forces Pensions, there are some different entitlements/rules. Rather than bore everybody on here with it, if anybody wants to discuss it, please PM me.
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Old Oct 12th 2017, 10:06 am   #9
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Default Re: EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

Quote:
Originally Posted by calman014 View Post
According to EU rules you can link different periods of entitlement together.
I've managed to establish my UK entitlement so far.

Germany now has a 5 year minimum qualifying period (used to be 10) but my 2 years there can be linked to my UK or later NL entitlements in order to recuperate what I had paid in.

In theory the EU rules state that you apply in your country of residence and mention periods of employment in other EEA states, and the 'national authority' will chase it all up for you and make sure you get what you are entitled to..hmmmm..doesn't sound too reliable to me..

Anyway I will keep at it and see what I come up with and how (and from where) it will be paid.

PS: One loophole to watch out for if you have a forces pension, it may be reduced if you also have entitlement to a regular UK old age pension.
While it might not sound reliable this is actually what happens,
I needed to get my pensions from 4 different providers, France, UK, Denmark and Spain. I'm a Spanish resident and I went along to the SS when I retired and they took care of everything apart fro the UK which started automatically when I reached 65.

My main pension provider is (for me) a very generous Spain :-)

My impression of the EU Pension combining rules is that its very fair and designed to get you the maximum available
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Old Oct 12th 2017, 4:52 pm   #10
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Default Re: EU Pension puzzle, gathering the pieces..

Thanks mfh for your words of encouragement..
The EU has a very informative website about it...the problem is the various 'state' websites are not so clear or the information is hidden in little nooks and crannies of the websites..

It's all starting to make sense now so soon hope to have all the information I need.

Thanks Cynic, also investigated S1 but not applicable in my case.

See: Moving abroad - Healthcare abroad - NHS Choices

for those interested.
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