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14 Jan 2015

Government Unveils Free Pensions Advice Service

In light of the new flexible pension reforms due to come into force this April, the government has recently unveiled a new free pensions guidance service called ‘Pension wise: your money. Your choice´, Money Wise reports.

Since chancellor George Osborne announced the changes to pensions back in April 2014, there has been some confusion over how the new legislation will affect the ways in which savers and retirees should approach their retirement plans. But the new advisory service hopes to do away with that, offering retirees access to free and impartial guidance on how to get the most from their pension savings.

The Pensions Advisory Service and the Citizen´s Advice Bureau will work together on the new service, so that retirees can either speak to a “guider” online, over the phone, or face-to-face. Guidance sessions will last approximately 45 minutes, and consumers will come away with a summary document of their conversation so that they can make informed decisions later in their own time.

The service will be available for those who have defined contribution pensions; with government figures showing that over 300,000 defined contribution savers will be retiring per year, it looks set to help a lot of people. Dr Ros Altmann, the government representative for older workers, has praised the initiative, adding: “Until now there has been no help with the complex decisions people face when they reach retirement age and at last there is an independent source of help.”

The ‘Pension wise´ brand has been protected so that any firms trying to imitate its service could face legal implications. This is intended to give consumers peace of mind and total trust in the organisation.

While there is no official launch date yet, the service is expected to come in around the Easter period. Until then, those with defined contribution pensions can take part in the pilot scheme via the government website.

Copyright M2 Bespoke 2015.

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