New pension charge could catch out savers

Alistair Hardie said that advisers should sit down with clients to check the amounts that people have invested in their collective pension funds ahead of the deadline.

For example, someone set to receive a final salary pension of around £60,000 a year will likely be caught by the new limit. Even if their expected final salary is less than this, if they have also saved into a private pension, combining the two funds together could see them close to the limit.

Mr Hardie said: “Savers might be years away from retirement but if they have saved a fair amount in various pension funds they could be near the danger zone.”

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Adviser view

Joss Harwood, co-director at Durham-based Eldon Financial Planning, said: “When you look at a number like £1.25m, you think: ‘It doesn’t affect me.’

“But it is final salary schemes where difficulties arise, such as NHS and teachers’ pension schemes; people with long careers, who may be quite surprised they’re near the limit.

“Not all people will become aware or will understand the implications. It’s a new rule that’s catching people unawares. What was once straightforward has become mud to wade through.”