Your resolution for 2021 – become acquainted with your pension age(s)

Last October, phased increases to the State Pension age (SPA) reached 66 for both men and women, with further rises in the pipeline. And did you know that the minimum age for taking funds from a personal pension is also scheduled to rise in 2028? Taking the time to become familiar with your pension ages, and what you can expect to receive, is an essential step in creating your plan for retirement. The easiest way to find out your State Pension age is by visiting the government website www.gov.uk/state-pension-age.The State Pension – is paid to anyone who has made at least ten years’ worth of National Insurance contributions during their working lifetime. At present, the maximum payment is £175.20 a week (£9,110.40 a year), but how much you get depends on how many years you contributed for. Some people who have accrued Additional State Pension may get more than this ‘maximum’. To check your State Pension forecast, go to www.gov.uk/check-state-pension.Personal pensions – including workplace or individual personal pensions, can currently be accessed by savers at age 55. However, last September, the government confirmed this would rise to 57 in 2028. Prompted by increased life expectancy, this change will mean that those who are currently aged 47 or under and wish to pursue this option will have to wait an extra couple of years to do so.The value of investments and income from them may go down. You may not get back the original amount invested. A pension is a long-term investment. The fund value may fluctuate and can go down. Your eventual income may depend on the size of the fund at retirement, future interest rates and tax legislation.