THE CHANGING PENSION WORLDState Pension Age (SPA)
The increase in life expectancies meant an end to the standard SPA of 65 for men and 60 for women. By 2020 both men and women’s SPA will be 66, increasing to 67 between 2026 and 2028.
You can find your SPA by using the government’s online calculator at Gov.UK.
If you reached state pension age on or after 6 April 2016, you will receive the new flat-rate state pension of £155.65 per week.
To receive the new flat-rate pensions, you need 35 qualifying years of National Insurance contributions or credits.
To get an estimate of your entitlement visit Gov.UK.
In order to place more responsibility on employers, the Government rolled out its auto enrolment scheme, which effectively forces employers to place employees into a pension scheme and make a contribution.
More Choices When You Retire
Pension flexibility has opened up wider options as to how and when you can start taking benefits from your pensions. The main features are:
Flexible access to pensions from age 55
25% tax free cash may be spread over time
Death benefits paid to beneficiaries on death before age 75 paid tax free
Flexible access allows you to decide when and how much income you need, taking income or tax free cash as and when you need it and making use of your personal allowances.
THE TAX BENEFITS
Pensions offer valuable tax advantages.
For every £80 a basic rate taxpayer puts into a pension, the taxman adds £20 tax relief. Higher rate taxpayers can claim even more.
When a pension becomes payable, HMRC rules usually allow you to draw 25% of your fund ‘tax free’.
The prospect of retiring and drawing benefits can be daunting, but with good planning it should make the transition smooth and stress free.
You may have plans which include valuable guarantees, or various pension arrangements built up over the years. Our Retirement Planning Service will analyse all of your plans to ensure you are fully informed of the benefits they provide and how best to draw them.
You may wish to access your full tax free cash entitlement or maybe you are continuing to work part-time and only wish to draw a proportion. Perhaps you are more comfortable with a fixed income stream. Alternatively, you may prefer to have full flexibility with your pension, drawing money as and when you need it and leaving the remaining pot invested for growth. The death benefits provided by your plans could be a priority for you and we can discuss how best to address this.
We will guide you through the retirement process, helping you plan how much money you need to live off, utilising your personal allowances and plan how to draw your benefits most tax efficiently.
Cash Flow Analysis
Our Cash Flow Analysis software is a straightforward and visual tool which will plot your income needs and expenditure. If you’re looking to take a once in a lifetime holiday or make a big purchase like a new car, we can plot that into your personalised chart to determine what impact that will have on your overall financial objectives.
Ongoing Review Service
With our Ongoing Review Service:
We will meet at least annually to review how your plans are working for you, the investment strategy, your likely income needs for the next year and any other changes in your circumstances.
You will have access to your adviser whenever you need them.
You will receive our tailored client communications, including our quarterly magazine and monthly Economic Review.
Behind the scenes, our Investment Committee meet quarterly to review your funds and meet with fund managers.
All statements concerning the tax treatment of products and their benefits are based upon our understanding of current tax law and HMRC practices both of which are subject to change in the future. Levels and bases of reliefs from taxation are also subject to change, and are dependent on your individual circumstances.