Sorry for the delay in this next post this one has been written and should be attributed to a friend Lou Lou who inspired this one.
As retirement approaches, many of us face the nightmare task of tracking down small-sized pension funds. Many of you won’t remember that you may have even started paying into the fund or put the money aside. Others will be convinced it’s gone forever as companies change hands or close down.
Then there’s the difficulty of claiming or transferring the money charges can be high if you are going to use tracing companies but do remember you can do this yourself Government figures suggest that 4.7 million additional small pension pots will be added to the system by 2050.
At the moment, people get in touch with the Department of Work and Pensions DWP for help finding a lost pension, and hundreds of inquiries are fielded by the Pensions Advisory Service .
At a time when pensioners are facing the full effects of the granny tax, and low saving interest rates and annuities— the income paid out for life in return for your pension pot — reuniting people with lost funds has never been more important.
People are often hampered in their search because companies they used to work for no longer exist or have been taken over. In addition lost records by companies and former employees are another hurdle in the trying to track down old pensions.
For free help tracking down a pension, you can contact the Pension Tracing Service Phone 0800 1223 170 to make a telephone application or visit the website pensiontracingservice.com
From May 2016 a new DWP website has been launched by the Pension Tracing Service to help people more easily and quickly locate their lost pension savings.
There is currently an estimated £400 million in unclaimed pension savings. This is money people have previously saved for their retirement, and the new website will better help people to locate their hard-earned savings.
Minister for Pensions, Baroness Ros Altmann said:
‘People have had on average 11 jobs during their working life which can mean they have as many work place pensions to keep track of.
The new DWP online Pension Tracing Service helps reunite people with their lost pensions, giving details of providers to help people track them down.
If you have a defined benefit e.g if you worked for a large organization such as the NHS local government e.t.c. you can also contact Pensionwise.gov.uk if you have a defined contribution pension e.g you have a personal or workplace private pension. Pension wise give free impartial advice and you can make an appointment to for a face to face interview in your local area or via telephone.
I’d encourage anyone who thinks they may be missing out on any savings to use the free online service at www.gov.uk/find-pension-contact-details.’
DON’T FORGET WITH ANY PENSION COMPLETE ‘AN EXPRESSION OF WISH FORM’ OR SIMILAR AND PUT WRITE DOWN DETAILS OF BENEFICIARIES WHO SHOULD RECEIVE YOUR PENSION IN THE EVENT OF YOUR DEATH E.G. 20% TO A, 30% to B ADDING UP TO 100% AND LET YOUR PENSION PROVIDER KNOW YOUR WISHES.
‘Below is a true story of a colleague who managed to trace a pension that was over 20 years old and had been forgotten about they are happy to share their details however the names have been changed to protect their identity.
Ms A worked for a company over 20 years ago part-time and made enquiries using the PENSIONWISE website.
” I had never received any pension statements from the company so did not expect to get anything at all. I contacted the pension provider using the above link and to my surprise I was advised that I had a pension available I was offered the option of receiving it at instalments of £90.00 per month or a lump sum payment of £2000. I opted to take the lump sum payment.”
I would strongly advise others to do the same you have nothing to lose you may find hidden treasure.
Good luck with your own search.