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Renewed hope for advice on personal accounts

A Department for Work and Pensions conference has given fresh hope to IFAs on the role of advice in the Government’s personal accounts regime.

Civil servants, advisers and providers met in London last week to discuss the best ways for members of the Government’s personal accounts scheme to deal with the transition of their pension funds into annuities and drawdown.

There was a strong consensus that almost everyone holding a personal pension account should be allowed to use an open market option to shop around for the best annuity rates.

The Government could consider implementing a personal account default annuity option for people who are auto-enrolled and unlikely to engage in the annuitisation process. There was also recognition of the need to reform trivial commutation rules.

Hargreaves Lansdown head of pensions research Tom McPhail says: “This is music to the ears of IFAs. We want to arrive at a point where the open market option is the default option.”

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