Pensioners living on a low income with a partner of working age are being urged to check their eligibility for benefits.
Age UK North Tyneside is calling on people to check their eligibility for Pension Credit and Housing Benefit and submit a claim before the government changes the rules on May 15.
The change will see the right to claim Pension Credit and Housing Benefit withdrawn from future claimants who have a partner not yet at pensionable age, with potentially devastating consequences for those affected.
The charity is warning that by slashing the benefits by as much as £7,000 a year, the new policy will place some pensioners in the position of being financially better off if they split up and live apart from their younger partner.
Rebecca Rutter, information, advice and campaigns manager at Age UK North Tyneside, said: “It’s not at all unusual for one partner to be older than the other so many older couples in North Tyneside on low incomes could be affected by this policy change, even though many of them may not know it yet.”
Age UK North Tyneside is urging anyone who may be entitled to claim benefits to call 0191 280 8484 Option 0.
For further information about the change visit www.ageuk.org.uk/northtyneside/our-services/information-and-advice/
Rebecca added: “We are urging any older person who is worried about money or thinks they may be entitled to claim Pension Credit or other pensioner benefits to get in touch with us ASAP before May 15 so we can help them through the claiming process.”