Poor health is the single biggest factor triggering retirement, says Skandia.
It surveyed 1,641 people aged 50-67 and found that half of the 825 who had retired had been forced into retirement due to poor health.
Only 3 per cent retired because they could afford not to work, which Skandia says highlights the importance of saving into a pension at an early age and having suitable protection insurance.
Eighty-four per cent of the retired people retired before reaching state retirement age but almost half of those who had retired say that it had not been their choice to retire when they did.
Nearly 20 per cent say they had retired because they had had enough of work, 10 per cent were given an early retirement package by their employer and 8 per cent retired because they were made redundant.
Forty-two per cent are concerned they would not have enough money to live comfortably on in retirement.
Head of pensions marketing Nick Bladen says: “Half the people in this survey found that ill health is not just something that happens to other people and there is a high chance that if people are forced to retire early, financial worries are going to be top of the list.
“This is all the more reason to start planning for retirement well in advance and for people to make sure that they are prepared for the unexpected.”