A Spanish State pension may be payable to those foreigners who have made more than the minimum social security payments required to qualify. In most cases this is 15 years. Each EU country adds together the insurance contributions from all EU countries. Then each country sees how much state pension (if any) a person would get if the insurance contributions had all been paid into that country's own social security scheme. Each country pays part of a person's pension; how much depends on how much has been paid into its scheme.
The Spanish State Pension System
The Spanish pension system is based upon earnings-related schemes which cover both employees and self-employed (Autonomo) persons.
Pensions are calculated on the individual's earnings in the 15 years previous to retirement. A full pension is reached after 35 years of contributing and at the age of 65*. However, this may be topped-up for low-earners after means-testing.
Claiming a Spanish State Pension
Each EU country where a person has paid into social security towards a pension, including Spain, will look at the contributions under its own scheme. It will then work out how much pension is available, also under its own rules.
Any social security contributions made in another country or EU-reciprocal agreement country may be taken into account if it will help to get a State pension, or a higher State pension. Spanish Social Security Seguridad Social can supply further details or forms.
- Tel: 900 16 65 65
Calculation of Amounts
Each country sends details of a person's social security record to the other countries. In brief, each country adds together a persons contributions made in all countries. Then each one sees how much State pension would be allowed if all contributions had been paid into its own social security scheme, for example Spain. But each country only has to pay a part of this depending on how much was paid in to it.
Claiming Pension from a Home Country ( Such as the UK ) Each country decides how it will pay a State pension; further information is available from and the authorities who run the country's State pension scheme.
- A foreigner from the UK should ask the International Pensions Centre and complete the claim form IPCBR1
- A person who is some time away from retirement age can complete the form BR19 which gives a State pension forecast of the benefits available from the UK
Both forms are available from the Department for Work and Pensions.
Apart from identifying pension benefits it is imperative that a claimant remembers to contact all previous employers. An enormous amount of money is lost in unclaimed, forgotten pensions.
* The Pension Reform came into effect on January 1st 2013, which brought the age of retirement from 65 to 67 for both men and women. The increase will be phased in gradually, and scheduled to take full effect by 2025. The minimum period of contributions to qualify for a 50% reduced pension remains 15 years, but increases to 22 years minimum to qualify for a full pension. You can read more by clicking >> Here <<