A 61-year-old British woman living in South Africa yesterday launched a high court challenge over the government’s “unlawful” policy on state pensions for expatriate pensioners which if it succeeds could trigger increased payouts to almost half a million people. Annette Carson is challenging government rules which mean pensioners living in countries such as South Africa, Australia and Canada can end up receiving dramatically smaller state pensions than those who move to an EU country or the United States. Her barrister, Richard Drabble QC, told the high court yesterday that thousands of British citizens living abroad have “a burning sense of injustice” over the government’s failure to increase their state pensions in line with inflation. He said the government was contravening Mrs Carson’s human rights and was guilty of discrimination. Mrs Carson is contesting a refusal by the Department for Work and Pensions to uprate her state pension annually because she lives in South Africa – one of 150 countries where people have their pensions frozen either at the date they arrived abroad or when they retired. Her test case, set to finish today, has ramifications for 430,000 expatriate pensioners, many of whom paid national insurance contributions throughout their working lives…. Read full this story
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