Govt needs to make pension reform changes clear

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Govt needs to make pension reform changes clear

The state pension reforms will simplify the pensions system, but the government has yet to get to grips with how to communicate the changes to it effectively, Tom McPhail has said.

“The state pension is the bedrock for millions of people’s financial security in retirement. However, the transition will not be straightforward,” the head of pensions research at Hargreaves Lansdown said.

Highlighting some of the flaws, Mr McPhail said it should be possible for individuals of any age to log into the government website and see their personal state pension entitlement.

There should be online calculators for people to use so they can look at how they would be affected by the reforms, which are set to be introduced in 2016, and what they can do about the changes.

Mr McPhail said they expected the announcement of the level of the new state pension to be in the Autumn Statement, and estimated it to be around £155 per week.

Adviser view

Brian Hill, financial adviser at Wiltshire-based Jones Hill, said: “It has always been the case that no one knows exactly what they will get. In my view, the state pension needs to move towards a position where one can get the information they need online through a simple calculation without having to wait two to three weeks, and then receive it in a format they do not understand.

“Also, when people receive information from a provider, it should also give details on the state pension so that all of the information the person gets is simple and joined up.”