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making this calculation.  So generally speaking an older person or a person with a chronic
       health condition such as kidney disease could receive an increased Annuity payment known
       as an ‘Enhanced Annuity’, as the pension provider would take into consideration the fact
       that the Annuity payments may not need to be paid out for as long as they might do to a
       healthier person.

       I would therefore strongly recommend that people with any known health issues, especially
       chronic conditions like kidney disease, at least obtain an Enhanced Annuity quotation to
       assess the income payment on offer when considering their options at retirement.
       The Chancellor, in his 2014 Budget, changed pension legislation and indeed the pensions’
       landscape in a revolutionary manner by allowing flexible access to pension funds and essentially   Ged Dixon, Director
       scrapping the requirement to purchase an Annuity at age 75.  He also allowed pensions to be   and Chartered Financial
                                                                                              Planner, Morlaix Limited
       passed down the generations, unlike an Annuity which could only be paid out to a spouse or
       vulnerable beneficiary on the death of an Annuitant (the person who had purchased the annuity).
       These new rules are known as ‘Flexible Access Drawdown’ which provides flexibility on
       when and how much you draw down from your pension fund.  Generally, you may withdraw a
   Anyone over 55 will tell you how quickly maturity happens

       maximum of 25% of your pension fund tax free, with the   Occupational Pension Schemes
       remainder being invested for you.  You then decide on   I have concentrated on ‘Personal Pensions’ so far, but there
       when to draw this balance down as future income.  There   is another type of pension too.  This one falls under the
       are still potentially tax implications on any withdrawals from  ‘Occupational Pension Scheme’ rules.
       your pension fund, and for this reason I would advise you to   Some people may have an occupational pension scheme
       seek professional advice so that you fully understand how   through their employer.  This is commonly known as a
       these might affect you personally.                    ‘final salary’ scheme.  These schemes have very valuable

       Even if you decide the Flexible Access Drawdown route   benefits as the majority of the risk lies with the company,
       is for you, you still have the opportunity to choose the   which has to pay an income to the employee based on the
       Annuity route at any given point if your circumstances   years of service and salary linked to that employment.
       change. You may even decide to purchase an Annuity
       with a proportion of your fund and leave the remainder   Work Place Pensions
       in Flexible Drawdown.  A professional financial planner   It is also worth noting that employers now have a legal
       can discuss the merits of this with you.  Everyone has   responsibility to provide a ‘Work Place Pension’ for certain
       very particular circumstances and so there is no ‘one size  employees.  This means that the employer is legally bound
       fits all’ when considering these very important financial   to set up a pension scheme into which employee (your)
       options.  It is also important to remember that there   contributions may be paid.  For every payment into the
       will be an element of risk involved with Flexible Access   fund made by the employee the employer may also have to
       Drawdown, as your pension fund will remain invested.    make a contribution.  For younger kidney patients who are
       The income you receive may fall if investment returns are  working it will be very much in their interest now to ensure
       below those you had assumed.                          this Work Place Pension is in operation at their place of
                                                             work and that the maximum contributions that they can
                                                             afford are being made, in order to ensure a reasonable fund
       Contributing to a pension                             has accrued by the time possible compromised health later
       A person may contribute to any number of pension plans   in life dictates that full time work is no longer an option.
       and the personal contributions made by an individual
       are unlimited.  However, there is a limit on the amount of   As you can see the pensions question is not a simple one to
       gross contributions that an individual can pay each year   answer as each of us has very individual circumstances and
       and benefit fully from tax relief.  Tax relief is restricted to   requirements.  So it really is important to seek the advice
       the higher of £3,600 or 100% of UK relevant earnings –   of a professional financial advisor.  The advice you receive
       subject to an annual allowance.   For example: a basic   will give you an up to date scope of just what is available
       rate taxpayer paying in £80 per month would have the   out there for you in terms of a future income and give you
       contribution increased to £100 per month through tax relief.  peace of mind.
       For further information on recommended and approved financial advisors visit : or
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