Ireland does not have an official retirement age but the State Pension Age is currently age 66 and the State Pension (Contributory) is paid to those who have enough social insurance contributions. It is not means tested and you can have other income and still receive it, but all your incomes will be liable for income tax.
From 2021, the age for pension payment will rise to age 67 and in 2028 it will rise to age 68.
In most Irish occupational pension schemes the Normal Retirement Age is still 65 but certain occupations allow an earlier Normal Retirement Age. Many occupational pension schemes aim to provide retirement benefits that includes the State pension which used to be paid from age 65.
The increase in the age at which the State Pension is payable causes a problem for many retirees who at 65 will face a shortfall in their pension income.
That shortfall is the amount of the State pension, currently €230.30 per week or €11,975.60 per year.
Retirees with an adult dependent under age 66 will lose €388.80 per week or €20,217.76 per year.
Retirees with an adult dependent over age 66 will lose €442.30 per week or €22,999.60 per year.
For many employees, their best option will be to negotiate with their employer to see if they can work beyond age 65.
Some employers have allowed people to work on after the Normal Retirement Age.
Where employers agree to extend the retirement age, people who reach 65 and remain in service will have the option to:
- Take all of their pension benefits and remain in service without making further contributions to the pension scheme
- Defer taking their pension benefits until they actually retire. They could also continue to contribute to the pension scheme, if they wish, even though the employer is not obliged to keep contributing.
Any employee who will qualify for the maximum allowable pension benefits at age 65 would obviously not continue contributing, as their pension benefits will be capped at the Revenue maximum.