The increase in state pension age to 66 will happen more quickly than originally planned and could be in place by 2016, minister say.
Secretary of state for work and pensions Iain Duncan Smith and pensions minister Steve Webb launched a consultation on the changes this morning.
Webb said: "We need to move fast on 66, we have said it will not be before 2016 but we need to get moving.
"Now is not the time for fiddling round the edges. This is not an easy decision, and raises many issues that need to be considered."
Duncan Smith said it was important to concentrate on realising a state retirement age of 66 as a first step.
He played down reports the pension age would eventually hit 70 and said it was crucial people focus on the reality that they may spend far longer in retirement that they think.
Labour's timetable - set in 2007 - would have seen the state pension age rise to 66 by 2026, to 67 by 2036 and to 68 by 2046.
The coalition plans to speed up the initial increase and investigate how fast, and to what are further increases are made.
Unions slammed the move.
Unison general secretary Dave Prentis said: "The government seem hard wired into attacking the most vulnerable in society. #
"Workers who have to rely on their state pension to make ends meet, will have no option but to carry on going for another year - whatever the cost to their health - but the better off will be able to retire earlier.
"One rule for the rich, another for the poor. This lack of joined up thinking will pile more misery on workers, as well as increasing the long-term costs to our NHS."
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