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Full-time mothers should be auto-enrolled, says LEBC

8 April 2019

LEBC Group has called for all full-time mothers to be auto enrolled into their own pension plan, helping to reduce the gender pension gap and enabling women to claim their share of pension tax relief.

As workers aged between 22 and 66, earning more than £10,000 a year, prepare to see their auto enrolment pension savings increase from 6 April, LEBC says mothers receive neither the minimum wage nor pension despite working an average 60 hours per week.

According to the national IFA group, mothers complete 37 hours of child minding alone with cooking, housework, laundry and transportation making up another 23 hours per week.

Kay Ingram, director of public policy, LEBC, said: “Many of the women we speak to have no idea that as non-earners they can still pay into pensions and receive an automatic 20% boost to their savings in tax relief. We encourage more women to continue saving for retirement and recommend that they earmark part of the family budget to this end. We want to ensure more women know they can afford to save by claiming the ‘free money’ available to them – the marriage allowance, credits for childcare and carers allowance included.”

Ingram said that two incomes paid in retirement will also benefit their partner in the longer term, with a couple able to take home far more net income when they each have pensions.

A combination of career breaks, returning to work in a part-time role and lower salaries, means women at the age of 65 have an average pension fund of £35,800; just one fifth of their male counterparts.

“Whether in employment, working in the home, caring or in retirement there are lots of steps women can take to improve their retirement prospects and during the new tax year we will focus on ensuring that women get access to the advice they need,” Ingram added.

LEBC is set to publish a practical guide on how to narrow the gender pension gap next month, offering practical tips to help women save for retirement.

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