Transferring out of your company pension plan
If you’re considering transferring your company pension plan, we’ll be happy to help. It’s important to note that once we’ve been told what you’ve decided to do, you may not be able to change your mind. Please be sure you understand all your options, and the effect of any changes you make. There are a few things you should think about before you make any decisions.
If you have any questions once you’ve read this summary, or need any help understanding your options, either speak to your HR department or call us on 0808 234 3030, or +44 178 644 8844 if you’re calling from abroad.
How a company pension plan works
There’s a variety of pension plans available. They’re designed to provide a tax-efficient way of helping you to build up a pension pot to provide for your retirement.
Payments might be made into your plan by you, your employer, or both of you. Pension plans offer tax relief on your payments, subject to certain limits.
Your money will be invested in funds looked after by fund managers, who try to achieve the best returns possible. Any growth in your plan will be largely tax-free too. A charge is taken for managing your plan. Details of your fund choices and charges can be found in your annual statement. If you don’t have your annual statement or you’ve lost it, you can request a new one. Just call us.
In most cases, when you take your benefits, you can take up to 25% of your plan tax-free and the remainder will be taxable.
Tax rules are complex and require careful consideration and the impact will depend on your individual circumstances. Taxation, legislation and HM Revenue & Customs practice is liable to change without notice. You may want to seek advice.
If you’d like to transfer to a different pension provider we can help you. Depending on your plan rules it may be possible to transfer some of your pension savings. To find out your options speak to your HR department or call us.
If you have several pension plans, you could consider combining them into one plan. You should discuss this with a financial adviser.
Pension transfers are a complex area of financial planning. Getting the decision wrong could have a significant impact on the benefits you receive. Contact your HR department or call us for more information, and you should seek financial advice.
Things to consider before making your decision
There are a few things you should think about before transferring your plan:
- Any guarantees, benefits and options under your existing plan may be lost and this could affect the benefits you receive.
- You may lose out on future employer contributions to your plan.
- The features and investment options of another plan may be different to this plan. You should consider if they will meet your needs and requirements.
- Charges may be higher or lower from those you pay now.
- There’s no guarantee another plan will perform any better than this plan.
- Transferring out of the With-Profits Fund could result in a market value reduction causing the value of your plan to fall and the loss of future bonuses.
- It can take time to transfer between plans causing a potential loss of investment growth while the transfer is completed, as your money won’t be invested.
- There may be an exit charge for leaving your plan.
- You may not be able to change your mind.
The value of your investment can go down as well as up and you may not get back the amount that you put in.
Please also remember that the transfer value of your plan may not be the same as its current value - ask us for a transfer value before making your decision.
Protecting yourself from pension scams
According to Action Fraud, the UK’s fraud and internet crime reporting centre, an estimated £1.2bn is lost to scams every year. So if you’re thinking of reinvesting the money from your plan, take a minute to find out more, and stay ahead of the scammers. There is also some very useful information available from The Pensions Regulator.
What to do now
Transferring your pension is a big decision. You should speak with a financial adviser first. If you don’t have one, you can get details of financial advisers on pru.co.uk and selecting ‘contact a financial adviser’. You may be charged for their services.
If you have any questions or need more help understanding your options, you can either speak to your HR department, or give us a call on 0808 234 3030 or +44 178 644 8844 if you’re calling from abroad. We can’t give you advice or make your decision for you, but we’ll be happy to help you understand your plan and talk you through all your available options and their possible implications.
We’re here 8am - 6pm Monday to Friday and happy to help in any way we can. Please make sure you have your plan number to hand when you call.