PENSION PLANNING & ADVICE
Your Pension Savings – Your future options
You have now reached a stage in your life where you are considering your retirement options. How you might retire, and how your pension savings can fund that retirement. Retirement is changing and the way you access your money in retirement needs to reflect this. Nowadays, there are many options available to retirees. It’s important to understand the options now available to you and whether your existing plan can meet your needs. Your Financial Adviser can help you carefully consider whether the options you need are available from your current plan and if not, what you can do about it and how much it will cost.
Pension Freedoms Explained
In April 2015, the Government introduced “Pension Freedoms” which gave you greater freedom and flexibility over how to access your pension savings. Anyone now aged 55 and over can take either a partial or whole lump sum from their pensions savings. No tax will be paid on the first 25%, and the rest regardless of how and when it is taken is taxed as if it were a salary at your income tax rate. There are now essentially four main ways for you to access your pension savings.
1. Buy an Annuity You can convert your pension pot into a taxable income for life by purchasing an annuity. There are different annuity options that would determine the level of income you would get. Not all annuities provide death benefits, so you may not be able to pass your pension pot on to your beneficiary.
2. Flexi-Access Drawdown Your pension pot is invested, but you are able to withdraw an income as and when it suits you. This provides you with flexibility to set the income you want. However, the level of income, or how quickly your fund becomes depleted can be dependent on the performance of your investment, and unlike with an annuity, your income isn’t guaranteed for life.
3. Take it all out as cash You can cash-out all your pension savings. You can normally take 25% tax free and you pay income tax at your marginal rate on the rest. This could cause a larger tax bill the following tax year.
4. Take part of it out as cash You can cash-out part of your pension savings. You can normally take 25% tax-free of the amount you take with the rest taxed at your marginal income tax rate. You can do this as many times as you like until you no longer have any pension savings.
A New ‘Modernised’ Pension Plan
• Take control of your pension savings.
• Income flexibility to suit your retirement planning.
• Keep future income options open.
• Optimise your tax efficiency - both on any money you might leave invested, and Inheritance Tax.
• Flexibility to change your approach to risk.
• Not everyone will need access to ‘Pension Freedoms’ so you could end up paying costs for something you don’t need.
• It is almost certain that the costs you pay will be higher.
• There is no guarantee that the funds you invest in will perform any better than your current plan. Your existing fund could outperform the new one.
HM Revenue and Customs practice and the law relating to taxation are complex and subject to individual circumstances and changes which cannot be foreseen.
For further expert advice please contact us