The online version of the Government-backed guidance service Pension Wise has gone live today.
The Treasury-designed website – pensionwise.gov.uk – focuses on six steps users should take in deciding how to turn their pension pot into retirement income.
- checking the value of the pot;
- understanding the options;
- planning how long the money needs to last;
- working out how much is needed in retirement;
- being aware of the tax implications;
- shopping around for the best deals.
Financial advice is referenced at the end of the shopping around section. The site explains that advisers will “look at your circumstances and recommend what you can do with your money”, recommends asking whether advisers are independent or restricted, and explains that fee structures may vary between advisers.
It then points users to the Money Advice Service website for tips on choosing an adviser. MAS’s adviser directory has opened for registration but is not yet live.
There is also information on how to avoid pension scams, living abroad and how the benefits system interacts with pensions.
The site is currently in ‘beta’ mode, meaning it is under development.
Citizens Advice will be delivering the face-to-face aspect of the guidance guarantee, while The Pensions Advisory Service is running telephone support. The Government predicts the bill for the first year of Pension Wise will run to £35m, with advisers set to pay over £4m.