A study by experts at Aston University has been released as part of the UK’s Talk Money week (6-11 November), offering critical insights into the financial wellbeing of older noncitizens in the West Midlands. The study highlights their vulnerability to financial shocks due to limited access to social safety nets, including welfare support.
It showed that only a small number possessed an active pension, leaving many without a safety net for later life.
The research, conducted by the Centre for Personal Financial Wellbeing, found that noncitizens often resort to individualised and relational coping strategies to navigate their financial challenges.
Individualised strategies involve engaging in various forms of work to bolster financial security, albeit often in precarious work conditions.
Relational strategies entail relying on family members or close friends for financial or other resources, though some noncitizens face additional cross-national financial responsibilities, exacerbating their financial vulnerabilities.
This research is part of an ongoing study into the financial and other precarities faced by older noncitizens.
Dr Katie Tonkiss, a senior lecturer in sociology and policy who led the project, said:
“These strategies, while not unique to noncitizens, emerge as a direct response to their restricted access to welfare support due to their immigration status.
“Notably, noncitizens recognise that obtaining citizenship status could enhance their financial security, but the associated costs remain too high.
“This situation leaves them trapped in a precarious financial predicament, potentially worsening in their later years.