Pension advice please.

Good morning all,

I am 58 and on disability benefits because for obvious reasons I can’t work. Hubby is my carer and gets carers allowance.

Hubby is 62 and at 65 his workplace pension pays out. State pensions starts at 66 so he gets his company pension a year before his state pension.

Hubby has about £10K of AVC’s. Can he draw his AVC’s now? £10K would be a boon because we need work done in the house and we can’t afford it. If we draw the money will it affect the benefits? I am not on income based, I’m on contributions based.


Hello Flo

I think your question is one for an expert; these things can get complicated. I would suggest contacting the CAB or maybe Age Concern. I think they both have informed advisers on these matters.


Ben`s right…expert advice is needed for your questions. The only thing I can tell is once your OH gets his state pension, his CA will stop…as happened to us.


Thank you both.

ive been trying to ring the DWP and can I find a relevant phone number - NO! Their general enquiry like doesn’t deal with this enquiry.

I’m no expert but I believe he could withdraw up to 25% tax free which can include any AVC’s.

I’ve also read that some companies allow a full 100% if the pension “pot” is below a certain figure.

But like the others have said get an expert to explain everything.

Most financial advisors offer free advice.

The DWP might not be able to offer advice on a private or company pension policy.

Another thing to remember is that a pension can be classed as a contribution to “household income”, so it may effect certain benefits.

Pensions are a mine field, seek expert advice.

I’ve got it straight from the government website that drawing a pension regularly is classed as income but drawing a lump is is classed as capital. Receiving a lump sum as capital does not affect non means tested benefits. Because that’s directly from the governments own website he’s going to draw it out.

The only other problem is we can’t get a plasterers to do the work. Nobody wants the job. What the hell is wrong with builders? They just want easy jobs.

I think there is a shortage of plaster at the moment, so not necessarily not wanting the job.

Today hubby tried to ring the pension company to put the process in place to withdraw his pension pot. About 8 phone calls later he eventually got somebody to put in a request which will be considered by the trustees. Erm - whose money is it?

Hi there,

Contributions based ESA isn’t affected by savings or your husband’s personal pension. His CA is unaffected by his personal pension or any draw down from it. There is, however, a limit to his earnings and HMRC will be informed of anything he gets taxed on. If he gets any unexpected taxable income, you must inform them because otherwise they will be in touch. Any other taxable income may affect his CA.
This is my understanding, we have been through the same and needed access to husband’s pension to do work to the house to meet my needs.

Obviously it would be wise to check your individual circumstances but the carer’s charities will help if you can’t get through to the CA helpline.

Hope this helps.


Wow, the benefits system is a nightmare.

My wife has today been turned down for CA because she earns £128.75 per week part time, 75p over the allowed weekly income.

She’s already reduced her hours a lot to care for me, in fact even if she was awarded the CA it nowhere near covers the loss in earnings made to get down to the permitted amount.

When she rang up the guy on the phone advised her to either drop more hours or increase her pension contribution to drop her below the £128 threshold.

It’s more rigid than a chastity belt. I find it very difficult to understand the rules.

So, you’re allowed to earn £128 a week as a carer. What does that £128 do to your benefits. Hubb6 has alwa6s been put off earning anything because we’ve always assumed if he earns money it’ll be taken from my benefits and there’ll be no point.

Not sure about other benefits as we are not claiming any.

I don’t think anybody is sure. Benefit rules are vague

Citizens Advice would be able to explain and advise.

Jan x