The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has published a guide on pension annuities and pension fund w...
The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has published a guide on pension annuities and pension fund withdrawal aimed at helping consumers understand their options as they approach retirement.
The booklet, part of a series of consumer directed guides published by the FSA, looks to increase understanding of the decisions that have to be taken when converting pension funds into an income that will last. The various types of annuities available are described in the guide, including level, increasing and investment linked as well as the options of using phased retirement and pension fund withdrawal as possible alternatives.
The key message from the FSA is that consumers should shop around for the best rate before making any decision. It stresses that annuity does not have to be purchased from the life office that holds the pension fund.
Due to the complexities of annuity products the guide also recommends that consumers get specialist advice and includes contact numbers, including IFA Promotion and the Sofa. The guide also gives an explanation of the type of information to expect when contacting an IFA.
Deborah Arnott, head of consumer education at the FSA, said: "We know from calls to our consumer helpline that people assume they have no choices when it comes to buying an annuity. This is definitely not the case and we really urge people approaching retirement age to read the booklet so that they are aware of the options."
Advisers can obtain up to 100 free copies of the guide by calling on 0800 9173311.
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