The Government has ruled out scrapping the requirement for advice on Pensions freedoms. Money Marketing recently reported that the Pensions minister, Baroness Ros Altmann said it would be “ridiculous” to scrap rules that force people with guaranteed benefits to take regulated advice before accessing their savings using the retirement freedoms.The Government has mandated that savers with safeguarded benefits worth more than £30,000 get regulated advice before taking their pot as cash. This includes both Defined Benefit pensions and policies with guarantees attached.
However, Providers have faced criticism from national newspapers for blocking people from accessing their money, with “expensive” advice costing up to £1,000 listed as one of the barriers facing consumers. On the back of this, the Personal Finance Society called on the Government to ditch the advice requirement. But speaking to Money Marketing, Altmann said: “If you have got guaranteed benefits, you have got to have some kind of advice.”
The right qualifications and permissions
So how can you check that your adviser has the right qualifications and permissions to give advice on Pensions’ Freedoms? To be able to fully advise you on all areas of pension planning a Financial Adviser must hold the pension transfer specialist qualification and hold the FCA permission – advising on pension transfers and opt-outs. Without these a Financial Adviser may not be authorised to fully advise you on all of the options available to you with your existing pensions, and you may miss out on valuable opportunities to utilise your pension to meet your life goals and objectives.
Download our guide to Pensions Freedoms here.
At UNIQ we hold the pension transfer specialist qualification and the FCA permission – advising on pension transfers and opt-outs ensuring we can provide full advice on Pensions Freedoms. Our clients generally have at least £100,000 in assets including savings, investments, pensions and cash.