Pensions committee chair Frank Field demands freedoms data


The chairman of the Work and Pensions select committee has demanded more information from the Government on the performance and take-up of retirement guidance.

Labour MP for Birkenhead Frank Field, who became chair of the influential committee in June, has written to pensions minister Ros Altmann requesting data on the performance of Pension Wise, as well as the affordability and availability of broader advice services.

Field calls for evidence from the Government on the take-up of all different aspects of Pension Wise, and how that differs from targets set prior to the reforms, as well as how the Government views the efficacy of the “second line of defence”.

Field further asks what measures the Government will enact to help consumers assess the value of retirement income products, and what evidence it has of an increase in scams since the launch of the freedoms in April.

Finally, the committee chair asks whether the Government has plans to improve transparency of charges, and whether policymakers will intervene to encourage providers to introduce default decumulation options.

Field’s committee is taking written evidence until 28 August and will hold oral evidence sessions in September when Parliament returns from recess.

The letter comes after Field slammed Altmann’s response to a report from the previous committee, which called for an increase in the age at which pensions can be accessed, as well as the launch of an independent pensions commission.