Family 'heartbroken' after teacher's pension dies with him
- Credit: The Stone family
The family of a beloved Norwich teacher is calling for laws to be changed around the allocation of pensions after death.
Nick Stone was the longest serving teacher at City of Norwich School, teaching modern languages there for his entire 31-year career.
The 55-year-old, double-jabbed teacher was admitted to intensive care with Covid-19 in late December 2021 and died in hospital on January 2.
Nick, who was single and never married, made his 77-year-old mother Carol the beneficiary of his pension - something he reiterated many times before his death.
But his family have since been told that because of his single status his pension - which he paid £450 a month into - has died with him.
Sister Helen Pentelow said: "We're heartbroken. Nick would have been totally unaware.
"What he'd paid out of his own money was more than £150,000. I don't even want to know what it would be worth now, I dread to think.
"It's bad enough knowing that that much money has gone in out of his own pocket."
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If Nick had been married or in a civil partnership his pension would have been passed on to his significant other, his family were told.
Widows and divorcees are also unable to nominate a beneficiary for a teachers' state pension.
Mrs Pentelow has taken action by launching a petition, hoping that other families won't suffer the same heartache.
"It's prolonged the grief and upset. We're missing him more than ever at the minute.
"I can't see anything changing for us but I hope this could be changed for somebody somewhere at some point."
And already the change.org petition has accumulated almost 3,500 signatures.
Mrs Pentelow added: "I have a text from him from November 18 - six weeks before he died - which haunts me now, saying that if he died in service that Mum would get his death in service grant, whatever's in the bank and his pension.
"They were his wishes and that was what he thought. It makes me feel sick just thinking about it."
Teaching unions the NASUWT and NEU did not comment.