A Pension Advisory Service can help you make educated decisions about your retirement plans. Pensions can be complex and something you might not deal with every day; well, our advisers do.

A Financial Conduct Authority-regulated adviser can assess your needs and recommend a suitable path for your retirement funds.

These professionals have the expertise to guide you in making sound financial decisions for your retirement, whether choosing the proper sort of pension, understanding the tax consequences, or performing continuous evaluations of your portfolio.

Why do I need a Pensions Adviser?

You need a Pension Adviser to ensure your pension funds, whether with one provider or many, are in the optimum place for your circumstances. A financial advisor can help you sort through the options and give personalised recommendations. They are qualified to advise you on estate planning, budgeting, investing, and transfer matters.

If your pension has some safeguarded benefits, such as a guaranteed income promise, and it’s above £30,000, it’s a regulatory requirement that you seek qualified advice for a specialist before making any decisions. Advisers can recommend suitable products and investment options aligning with retirement goals. It’s also important to consider the tax implications of different income withdrawal strategies to maximise returns and reduce tax.

Furthermore, professional guidance ensures that your pension remains on track with regular reviews. Staying informed about changing regulations and market conditions is crucial to avoid losing track of your portfolio or ending up paying more than you need to in management charges.

How Much Does It Cost For Pension Advice

Getting expert pension advice costs, as you pay for time and expert advice. How much will depend on the complexity of your plan and needs?

The most cost-effective way to pay for advice is usually from within the pension, as this can be very tax-efficient. Depending on the type of advice needed, a one-off consultation could be enough, or an ongoing retainer may be involved to access specialist support throughout life’s changes.

We will always state our charges after the initial assessment so that you are fully informed of any costs before you decide to proceed.

When choosing an adviser, look for someone with experience dealing with a wide range of pensions and investments who understands your circumstances, goals, and risk profile.

In short, getting expert pension advice doesn’t have to be expensive, but it pays off to research ahead of time to get value for money when seeking professional help with long-term planning objectives.

What is the Benefit of using a Pension Advisory Service?

If you work with a Pension Advisory Service you have piece of mind that your retirement savings are being looked after. A qualified pension adviser can help assess your current situation and create a suitable plan based on individual circumstances. They will recommend products and investment options that are appropriate for you, considering any changes in legislation or personal goals.

An experienced adviser will also be able to review existing pensions and investments, ensuring they remain suitable for your needs. They can identify areas where costs may be too high or investments may not perform optimally. Regular reviews are essential to keep track of progress towards retirement goals, and advice from an experienced adviser helps ensure this process remains manageable.

Using a pension advisory service offers additional benefits such as estate planning advice. This minimises inheritance tax liabilities while providing enough financial resources to meet long-term care expenses.

A good pension advisor understands that every client’s needs are different; therefore, they provide tailored advice so each individual receives the best information for their unique circumstances. Working with an independent professional gives clients unbiased advice from an expert who only has their best interests at heart – which is invaluable when making important decisions about one’s finances during retirement planning.

What Type of Pensions Can A Pension Advisor Help With?

A qualified financial planner can provide invaluable assistance in determining the best retirement decisions. They can help with pre-retirement advice, such as ensuring you are contributing enough to your pension pot, and retirement options, such as annuities, fixed-term annuities, and drawdown options. They can also determine if a transfer from a defined benefit pension would be advantageous.

Suppose you’re considering taking out some of your pension as a cash lump sum. An adviser will be able to recommend the most suitable and tax-efficient method of withdrawal. They can also advise on how much money is appropriate to invest in a pension scheme and explain how this could affect your income during retirement. Additionally, they can offer guidance on estate planning to ensure no surprises when leaving an inheritance.

What are ongoing pension Reviews?

Ongoing pension reviews are important for maximising the performance of your pension and providing you with a clear goal of a sustainable pension income. We usually recommend annual reviews or more frequent depending on your circumstances and investments.

Neglecting to review your pension can lead to disappointment, so it is best not to leave it too long between reviews.

A qualified financial advisor can help identify potential issues and provide guidance on necessary changes. They can also help you understand the cost of setting up a new pension plan and find the right providers to align with your goals.

Our advisors offer free consultations to discuss how they can assist you in effectively managing your retirement savings. With access to the entire pension market, our experts know to find suitable providers while considering any tax implications arising from their recommendations.

What Options Do I Have While I’m Working?

While you’re still working, you have several options to consider for planning your retirement and securing a comfortable future. One, often overlooked option is to consolidate all your pensions into one place. People tend to have more than one pension, often multiple ones from previous employers. It’s really important that those older pensions are reviewed to ensure the investments are still on track and that you aren’t overpaying in charges to run the plan.

A useful exercise many people undertake when reviewing older pensions is to consolidate them all under one roof. This allows for easier management and administration going forward.

Another option which should be regularly taken up is to review your pension value verses what you expect as an annual income in retirement. Some people fall into the trap of ignoring their pension until a few years before retirement and then discovering they haven’t saved enough. Reviewing your pensions with a financial adviser can help realign goals and set actions before it’s too late.

What Options do I have at retirement?

When you retire, you have a few options for accessing your pension.

An annuity provides a guaranteed income for life.
Drawdown gives you more flexibility and control over your finances.
Fixed-term annuities allow you to receive income for a set period.
Taking tax-free cash is an option if the value of your pension pot is small enough.

Regardless of your choice, seeking professional advice is important to ensure it suits your needs and goals.


An annuity can provide peace of mind in retirement. It allows you to rest easy knowing you have a guaranteed income for life.

There are several types of annuities available:

Lifetime annuities: These guarantee an income for life and can cover essential spending. They may also include inflation protection.
Enhanced annuities: offer higher incomes based on medical conditions or certain occupations.
Purchased life annuities: These pay capital plus interest. The capital is tax-free, while the interest is taxable.

Pension Drawdown

Pension drawdown can make withdrawing from your pension pot easier. With an income drawdown, you can take an income while keeping your pension fund invested in the stock market. There is no limit on how much you can withdraw each year, but the fund needs to keep growing to replace withdrawals.

This option is best suited for those with a large fund or other income who are not ready to take all their pension immediately. However, it is important to consider the cost of income drawdown and ensure that it doesn’t outweigh any potential investment returns.

Fixed Term Annuity

A fixed-term annuity provides a guaranteed income for a set period. At the outset, it offers a guaranteed interest rate, which is applied to your pension and isn’t affected by stock markets.

Payment amount, annuity rates, length of term and your details determine income. This product offers flexibility in choosing frequency and term lengths from 3-25 years.

Single or joint options and add-ons, such as death benefits and inflation protection, are available.

Taking Tax-Free Cash

Taking tax-free cash from a pension fund is a well-used strategy for people who want to access funds immediately but maybe don’t want to fully retire and start taking a pension income.

Taking only the tax-free amount is popular for those needing immediate cash, but it has drawbacks, such as losing out on future potential investment growth and income benefits.

If you take the entire fund in one payment, 25% will be tax-free, while the rest will be subject to income tax at your marginal rate. Make sure that you consider your future income needs before making this decision, and seek professional advice if required.

Tax on my Pension

Regarding tax and pensions, there are two key points to consider: tax relief on pension inputs and taxes on withdrawals.

Before making any decisions, understand your current tax situation and how the rules may apply to you.

Tax relief is available on contributions made into a pension, up to certain limits, whilst income received from withdrawals will usually be subject to income tax.

Tax Relief on Pension Inputs

Tax relief on pension inputs is available up to £60,000 per year (2023/24). Contributions exceeding this amount may result in a tax charge. This includes employer contributions, which are included in the annual allowance.

Money purchases or tapered annual allowances may also impact the amount you can contribute and the tax charged.

Tax on Pension Withdrawals

Depending on your circumstances, withdrawing money from your pension can result in a tax liability. Generally, this is treated as income from employment and taxed like any other earned income you receive.

Your State Pension is taxable too and paid ‘gross’ without any deductions.

To minimise taxes, consider using tax-efficient strategies such as phasing withdrawals or structuring allowances to keep yourself out of higher tax bands. Seek advice to explore options that maximise returns and reduce liabilities.

Regularly review spending needs to manage retirement expenses effectively.

The Pensions Advisory Service

The Pensions Advisory Service provides a vital resource for individuals needing assistance with pension-related issues, empowering them to make informed decisions about their retirement. It is a non-profit organisation in the United Kingdom that receives funding from the Department of Work and Pensions and government grants.  It offers free information, advice, and guidance on pensions, along with help resolving problems or complaints regarding pension schemes.

The organisation has recently merged with Money and Pensions Service and consolidated into MoneyHelper to provide a better consumer experience.

The services provided include assistance with state, company, or individual pension arrangements and a nationwide network of volunteer advisers. This includes experienced technical and administrative staff in London who can provide support. This consolidation aims to create a single source of information and guidance that all individuals can easily access.

The Pensions Advisory Service aims to ensure that people have access to free resources to make informed decisions about their future financial plans. Through its collaboration with other organisations such as the Money Advice Service, Pension Wise, government agencies, industry associations, and pension providers, it strives to raise awareness around pension-related issues while contributing to developing policies and regulations within the industry.

Overall, the Pensions Advisory Service provides an invaluable service enabling people to gain clarity on their financial situations to plan effectively for retirement – whether that be accessing advice on tax implications or understanding annuity options available. With its mission aiming at empowering individuals, it works towards providing much-needed support when dealing with such important life matters.


The Pension Advisory Service is a valuable resource for individuals looking to optimise their pension funds. Seeking advice from a pensions adviser is essential to maximise your retirement savings. While the cost of this service may vary, it is a worthwhile investment for its long-term benefits. Pension advisers know about all types of pensions and can provide ongoing reviews to ensure your retirement plans stay on track. During your working years, various options are available, such as increasing contributions or taking advantage of additional tax reliefs. Upon retirement, it becomes crucial to carefully consider how you will draw down your pension pot and ensure that any applicable taxes are paid correctly. By consulting with an experienced pensions adviser, you can have peace of mind knowing that your retirement finances are being managed effectively.


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© 2021 The Pension Transfer Specialist Arthur Browns Wealth Management are Authorised & Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority – Number 825843.