Thai wives and widows are set to be robbed of the British state pensions to which they have been entitled, in sweeping cuts that are planned by the UK Government.
In a move that sees foreign national spouses stripped of their financial security, the British Government is expected to announce today ( Wednesday) that they will no longer be entitled to the state pension rights that a wife or widow would have, were they to be a UK resident.
The announcement, expected in the traditional Queens speech, ( In which outlines of planned changes to British Law and government are announced), is a part of a series of austerity measures which the Coalition government expects to introduce in the coming year.
Currently if a British national marries a non British National, she has the same rights to wife and widows pension as her counterpart in the UK but in the planned move she will no longer be entitled to any benefits, and many expats , who have paid UK Taxes all their lives before retiring to live outside the UK will be outraged to see their wives stripped of their future financial security.
The British Pensions Minister, Steve Webb, has already stated that “too many foreign people who have never set foot in Britain at all are receiving UK pensions.”
The move which would affect over 250,000 foreign national spouses and widows around the world is not expected to see any major objection within the UK Parliament and hence an easy target for the ministry which has been tasked with reducing costs. However little thought has been afforded to those women, many of whom are supporting the children of their spouses and rely totally on their allowance to provide a living.
Whilst not affecting those foreign wives residing in the UK (or UK born wives who have never worked in their lives), Webb’s blasé statement, in advance of the Queens speech, ( National papers quote him as saying the payments are unacceptable) has, quite frankly, been seen as insulting by the thousands of British Expats who have worked and paid into the state pensions plan, only now to see the very benefits and future family security, for which they worked, taken away.
The savings, in many cases just 13500 baht a month for a widow, pale in comparison to the benefits paid to immigrants who swarm into the country and are repaid for their, often illegal, immigration with free housing and funding. Decades of benefit abuse by immigrants to Great Britain amount to billions of pounds lost to the Government but are rarely addressed by governments as “human rights” laws are imposed despite the anger of the population there.
In Thailand, powerless Expats can only sit back and wait to see the full effect of the changes but for widows here the hatchet cuts will, in many cases, be devastating as the pensions they receive will, in many cases, be their sole source of income.