You probably wouldn’t have needed much retirement planning 50 years ago because a retirement of less than 10 years was the norm. These days retirement usually lasts over 20 and although the State provides some basic financial security in the form the State Pension, the amount you receive depends on a number of factors.
Employers now have to provide a workplace pension to help people save towards their retirement income, over and above the State Pension. However, the benefits will vary depending the amount of contributions paid and other factors including investment performance and length of service. You need a far greater pension pot to ensure a long, financially secure retirement than you would have needed in the past.
Throw Pensions’ Freedom, the huge reduction in the lifetime allowance and restrictions on the annual contribution allowance in to the mix, and it becomes clear that getting professional retirement advice is not a luxury, it’s a necessity.
From April 2015 pensions investors aged 55 and over became able to draw from their defined contribution pension fund, exercising a range of flexible options to suit their circumstances. This provides far greater pensions’ freedom than before.
This may be attractive for many pensions investors, however caution is required because although 25% of the available fund can normally be withdrawn tax free, the balance of any money withdrawn from pensions will be subject to income tax at the individual’s highest marginal rate.
There may also be other implications with regards to death benefits, entitlements to state benefits and long term care planning, to name a few. Each and every person with a pension scheme will need to review their financial planning accordingly and if you’re thinking of taking a pension worth more than £30,000 you must get professional advice.
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