Personal Pension  

AJ Bell open letter calls for pensions overhaul

In an open letter to the financial secretary to the Treasury, Andy Bell, the firm’s chief executive, set out what he called a “revolutionary” seven-point plan aimed at “bringing pensions into the 21st century”.

The proposals included scrapping the lifetime allowance, simplifying the capped drawdown pension rules, revisiting flexible drawdown, reintroducing a Sipp-permitted investment list and applying 35 per cent tax on all lump sums at death.

In addition, Mr Bell requested early access to pension commencement lump sums and an extension of rules on serious ill-health lump sums.

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He said: “I am more convinced than ever that change is needed to the current system. Without a fundamental review, the system will fail to engage many savers due to its complexity and lack of flexibility.”

Adviser view

Paul Gibson, a chartered financial planner at Aberdeen-based Carbon Financial Partners, said: “My plea would be for politicians to stop constantly tinkering with pension legislation. They do not seem to realise the untold damage they cause.”