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You may be someone who has spent part or all of your working life employed by a large national employer who during that service provided you with a final salary occupational pension scheme. These schemes are highly sought after as they offer attractive and secure retirement benefits.
However with the introduction in April 2015 of the new pension freedoms, members of occupational pension schemes in the private sector now have choices that were not previously available to them. The new pension freedoms give private sector final salary pension scheme members far greater flexibility and access than ever before. With these new retirement benefit freedoms comes responsibility to ensure that your largest asset is used wisely.
Final salary pension scheme members are attracted to the concept of “owning” their own pension fund, benefiting from it throughout life and then pass the fund to their spouse and then children on death. The fund can become a family legacy asset benefiting more than one generation as it does not “die with you”.
Occupational Pension Scheme Transfers are a complex area requiring specialised qualified advice. In order for a firm to be able to advise on pension transfers they must hold the appropriate Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) permissions to undertake such advice.
The pension transfer must be undertaken by an individual who is deemed to be a pension transfer specialist. In order to achieve this status the adviser must have passed the relevant examinations and therefore hold the appropriate qualifications. At Estate Capital we have two individuals who hold this status.
Our financial advisers have a wealth of experience of helping clients properly plan for retirement and will be happy to guide you through the transfer of pension benefits. We’ll take the time to understand your circumstances and help you choose arrangements that best suit your needs.
We can analyse your pension scheme benefits, interpret the information and explain it to you in plain and simple terms.
Our financial advisers can:
Frequently Asked Questions about Pension Transfers
Yes, but it would still need to be in your financial interest to do this.
Legislation will allow this to be done from age 55 but there are likely to be penal tax consequences.
A Defined Benefit Scheme contains valuable guarantees and it may not be in your interest to transfer. It will be an individual decision based on your goals, objectives and individual circumstances. Thorough research and assessment of your situation can help make an informed assessment of the suitability of a potential transfer.
You can pass your pension fund to your children providing the pension scheme you are a member of has adopted the new rules post 5th April 2015. If you are a member of a defined benefit scheme you cannot pass any fund to your children. There may be short term payments to dependent children only.
You will be able to take benefits before the scheme normal retirement age providing the scheme rules permit this. However there may be an early retirement penalty reducing the income if you retire early. These penalties are commonly 4% per annum.
This can only be done if the value is below £30,000. Any pension scheme with a transfer value over £30,000 will require the transfer to be handled by a suitably qualified independent financial adviser.
You do not have to take your tax free cash all at once providing your pension fund is in a flexible drawdown scheme.
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If you would like to discuss any pension benefits that may require a specialist pension transfer adviser, we would be pleased to answer any questions you may have.