If you have experienced the following or are likely to, we would advise that you seek professional financial advice very soon:
Pension scheme closed to New Members
If your pension scheme is closed to new members this essentially means there is an expectation that the fund will struggle to meet its commitments if it was to continue in its current state. The National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) reported 17% of schemes in 2010 were closed completely, up from 7% the previous year.
Enhanced Transfer Value (ETV) Letter To Leave
If you’ve received a letter from your pension trustees offering an enhanced value if you transfer out of your scheme, they are clearly keen to reduce their liabilities. Not only is this a warning sign it could also work out very well for you.
Scheme ‘Frozen’ or Paid up
Pension schemes are ‘frozen’ or paid up when there is little or no hope of the fund meeting its current and future liabilities. If your company scheme has been paid up and you are no longer able to make contributions you may still be able to transfer out of the scheme.
The Company is in Financial Difficulty
Some people acquire a number of final salary pensions during their career. While this balances risk it’s vital you keep one eye on the performance of the company funding the scheme to make sure they remain viable.
- If they are a listed company check their financial performance
- ‘Google’ them to see if there are adverse news reports
- Look for falling product quality and large changes to senior management as they are other negative signs