UK state retirement pension service

Helping you claim the UK pension
while living in Australia

Unsure whether you’re eligible to receive the UK pension in Australia and the conditions surrounding it all? At RM Capital, we can help you through the complexities and explain what it means for your individual circumstances.

What is the UK State Pension Service?

The state pension is a regular payment from the UK government, given to anyone who has reached the state pension age and previously worked in the UK.


When you are employed, you make National Insurance (NI) contributions into the UK state pension service. Every year that you work, you earn 1/35th of the full state pension. This applies to anyone working from 16 years of age.

Can you claim the UK state pension if you retire in Australia?

You’ve moved and retired, or plan to retire abroad. Now comes the big question; Are you eligible to claim your UK pension in Australia? 


As long as you have accumulated enough credits to qualify for a state pension when living in the UK, you will be able to claim it when you reach pensionable age.


And it’s not only expats who can claim the pension. Anyone who has worked in the UK for 10 years or more and made NI contributions during this time is eligible.


You need to be a male born before 6 April 1951, or a female born before 6 April 1953 to start receiving the UK state pension. If you reach the state pension age and continue to work, you will still be eligible to receive it. 


The state pension age is gradually increasing, and it is expected that it will reach 67 by 2028. Unlike the Australian Pension, the UK State Pension is not means tested.


Currently, the maximum weekly pension payment is £168.60 or AUD$324.06. How much you receive is based on the years of contributions you have made. This includes credits for time off without work for looking after your family or caring for a loved one. The payment also depends on your age and gender.


Once you start receiving your UK pension, the amount will stay the same. The only fluctuation in the value of your payment will be from the exchange rate to Australian dollars.

Tax implications

It’s important to note that you will have to pay tax on your pension either to the UK or the Australian government. If you spend some of your time in the UK and partly in Australia, you will be classed as a British citizen and taxed in the UK. 


If you retire in Australia, you will be deemed a ‘UK non-resident’ and you will only have to pay tax on your pension income under the Australian system.

Can you claim both the UK pension and the Australian pension?

The good news is yes! Centrelink allows you an income of around $125 a week. They will assess your UK pension as income, and if this takes you over the limit, your Australian pension will be reduced by 50 cents for every dollar you exceed.

Making voluntary contributions

It is also possible, depending on your date of birth, to make up for any missing contributions by making voluntary lump sum payments.


Even if you’re living in Australia but worked in the UK and paid NI contributions for at least 3 years, you can still make voluntary contributions to increase any entitlements you accumulated while in the UK

Speak to a UK pensions specialist today

If you’re interested in finding out more about claiming the UK state pension when you retire in Australia, get in touch with us today.

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Want to know more? Contact our team today for more information