How will accessing my pension pot affect my means-tested benefits?

Withdrawals from your pot may have implications on your entitlement to means-tested benefits. There are rules around how your withdrawals from your pot will be treated in the calculation of your entitlement to the following income-related benefits:

  • Employment and Support Allowance (income-related)
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance (income-based)
  • Housing Benefit
  • Pension Credit
  • Income Support
  • Universal Credit


The Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) has produced a factsheet with some general information. You can find this at

If you’re judged to have deliberately spent or given away your pension pot to receive or increase benefits, the DWP or your local council may re-assess your eligibility and treat you as still having the money. If you’re able to take an income and have chosen not to do so, some or all of the income you could have taken may be taken into account.

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