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Cash in your Annuity Newsletter 3

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Cash in my Annuity Newsletter 3
29 July 2015

Thank you to those customers who have contacted us asking for an update and apologies to any who were expecting one.

Now that the dust has settled on the last Budget we can report that a major change has occurred. We fear that many will find this news frustrating.  

The truth is that since the election not much had happened that allows us to give you an indication of what type of products will be available to you, or perhaps more importantly when they will be available. The original anticipated start date has now been delayed. However before we get too ahead of ourselves it is worth recapping on events to date.

In March of this year, the then Coalition Government announced that they planned to introduce a traded annuity market that would allow customers who had previously purchased an annuity to sell it for a cash lump sum.

The election of a Conservative majority Government in May has, in effect, rubber stamped this proposal. We were therefore expecting this new market to be introduced from the start of the next financial year (6 April 2016) in line with the comments made by Chancellor George Osborne.

It is estimated that some 5 million people who currently hold an annuity will want to take advantage of these new rules and sell their annuity.

The financial services industry has highlighted a number of concerns which they want to be properly considered before it becomes legal to buy or sell an existing annuity. One of their prime concerns is fraud and how elderly customers in particular can be protected from fraudsters who will undoubtedly look for ways of getting their hands on other people’s money.   

It is also an established fact that many customers originally purchased their annuity without realising that a better deal may have been available from an alternative annuity provider. Many customers simply ticked one of the boxes on the retirement form presented by their existing provider. They were either not told, or did not understand that they did not have to buy their annuity from their existing provider, but could have gone to an alternative provider who may have offered them more money. The previous regulator, The Financial Services Authority, estimated that customers could have gained as much as 30% extra income if they had shopped around when buying their annuity.

It must be right that a customer who has previously made a poor decision regarding their annuity doesn’t end up making another decision that they may come to regret. With this in mind, many providers have said that if the new powers did come into force next April, they simply wouldn’t be ready. They feel that they would be rushed and they wouldn’t have sufficient time to properly design, test and deliver products that represented a good deal for customers.

With these thoughts in mind the Association of British Insurers (ABI) amongst others has been lobbying the Government to postpone the introduction of the legislation, and they have succeeded. Following a consultation, the Government has now pushed the launch back to 2017. The Government says this delay is to ensure policyholders are given enough support in making their decision. It will now publish its plans for a secondary annuity market in the Autumn as part of the Finance Bill 2016.

As stated above, we understand that many customers will see this as bad news and many will have to put their plans on hold. Please remember we are only reporting the facts to you and that this delay is not our fault !!!


Important : Your annuity is designed to provide you with a guaranteed income in retirement. This income will continue to be paid for as long as you live. If you sell your annuity you may not have a sufficient level of income to sustain your lifestyle in retirement. It is likely to be the case that the value of the lump sum you receive will be less than you would have received if you had kept your annuity and died in line with your life expectancy at the time you took out your annuity.
 
 
 
We are an internet retirement business. We help people with all kinds of retirement issues, We take great pride in what our customers say about us.
 
Drawdown Testimonials
 

”Considerate, conscientious and confidence-inspiring”

From the start Bob and his team let us know that they understood our nervousness about deciding what to do with our pension fund.  We were never put under any pressure to make a decision; on the contrary,  the team were considerate of our need to take our time to think about what we were doing and be satisfied that we were doing the right thing.  It didn’t seem to matter how many questions we threw at them – they always replied promptly and in as much detail as necessary and they were always ready to help further.

Indeed, we were very impressed by just how conscientious they are.   We received emails and paperwork accompanying every step we took and it would be no exaggeration to say that no efforts were spared to make sure that everything was documented down to the last detail.

Bob and his team inspire confidence and do so in a way that is friendly and familiar.  We’re confident that we’ve found someone who understands what’s going on in the pension industry and is able to help us make our own decisions about how best to invest our fund.   And we’re happy that this person is someone who’s always very approachable  and ready  to do what he can to help his clients. 

 
 
Mr V. S. - Prague
 
 
January 2015
 
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Please Note : Some of the ideas and concepts discussed on this website are not yet law and may not become law. There is still the possibility that some or all of these changes could be altered or cancelled as the changes announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer have to be passed by Parliament. We cannot be held liable for any action taken by a customer in anticipation of the proposed legislation becoming law.
 
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