RSS Feed

News

More Articles: Latest Popular Archives

Pensions freedoms stymied by charges

Contributor: |

The National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) has commented on yesterday’s (Tuesday) debate in the House of Lords on pensions drawdown charges.

Joanne Segars, Chief Executive, NAPF, said: “The NAPF shares the Lords’ concerns about savers’ freedom to access their pension savings readily and affordably under the new pension reforms. We raised these concerns last year when it became clear that the timetable to which the Government wished to implement the reforms was simply unrealistic.

“At the heart of this problem lies a tension between providing savers with products quickly and allowing time for a robust market to develop that’s fair to savers. The Government did not complete the legislation for these reforms until just 20 working days before the reforms were due to begin and unexpected additional regulation was announced as late as early this year.  With so little time to prepare it was always clear that, despite everyone’s very best efforts, there would be a significant gap between the Government’s ambition for these reforms on day one and the practical reality.

“Savers who wish to access their pension funds flexibly today may find they can’t secure the products or advice they need at a price they want to pay – and that’s understandably incredibly frustrating for them. All workplace pension schemes still allow eligible members to transfer the full value of their pot to a drawdown provider or use it to buy an annuity – as was the case under the old rules – and nearly half1 of schemes we asked have already made changes under the new rules to allow members to withdraw their full pot as cash. The problem remains for savers that there are limited products available to them, so until the market has developed we’d encourage savers to take their time and not rush.  And we continue to urge the Government to work with us and other parts of the industry to create a market where savers can gain good value, easy access to their pension savings.”

Receive more HR related news and content with our monthly Enewsletter (Ebrief)