Pensions are, of course, designed to provide you with sufficient money to live comfortably after you have retired from work. There are many different 'tools' used to save for retirement and the taxation and investment elements of pensions can appear baffling.
BrookMill IFA Ltd, an Appointed Representative of DRS Financial Advisory Group Ltd, specialise in explaining, recommending and monitoring pensions for you. Below are the most common sources of pension to fund for your retirement:
The Basic State Pension
- for people who have paid sufficient National Insurance contributions while at work or have been credited with enough contributions.
State pensions may not produce the same level of income that you will have become accustomed to whilst working. The State Pension is only £95.25 per week (2009/10 tax year) for a single person (though you would be able to claim means-tested state benefits if that was your only income). It's important to start thinking early about how best to build up an additional retirement fund. You're never too young to start a pension - the longer you leave it the more you will have to pay in to build up a decent fund in later life.
Additional State Pension
- this is now the State Second Pension (S2P). Before 6 April 2002, you built up SERPS (State Earnings Related Pension Scheme) benefits. Both are available to people earning more than a given amount (£94 a week currently). Many people who are not working because they are caring for young children or an elderly relative, or because of disability or long-term illness are also able to build up State Second Pension (but not SERPS). Additional state pension is not available in respect of self-employment income.
An Occupational Pension (through an employer's pension scheme)
- if your employer operates a pension scheme, it's usually a good idea to find out about the benefits of the scheme.
A Personal Pension Scheme (including stakeholder schemes)
- open to nearly everyone and especially useful if you are self-employed or your employer doesn't run a company scheme.
See the related documents for more information on Pensions and Retirement Planning.
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