Below are some frequently asked questions that you may find useful. Click on the questions to reveal the answers
There are various reasons for using Clarity. It could simply be that you would like an impartial explanation about the options that are available, so you can feel comfortable about making a final decision without any further assistance. Equally, once you know the way the various options work you might decide that you do need on-going help, but will be better able to approach a Financial Adviser with a better understanding of what you want to achieve and so feel more confident about the questions you ask so you appoint the right person to act for you. Because Clarity Pension Guidance 4 U only explain the options, no selling is involved – the entire purpose of our meeting you is to give information to empower you to take control.
No. Because Clarity Pension Guidance 4 U only explain the options, no selling is involved – the entire purpose of our meeting you is to give information to empower you to take control. For instance, It could well be that the pension provider you are already with can fulfil your needs. Clarity Guidance 4 U can help by equipping you with the questions to ask to know that.
We are providers of Guidance and do not sell or arrange investments which means we do not fall under the requirements of regulated activities and neither are we advised to register with the FCA. However, we do know our field and are pleased to assist those who are looking for an explanation of the options available.
Clarity Pension Guidance 4 U offers a personal service that we hope you will appreciate. Additionally, sometimes it is not convenient for clients to try and see someone during standard office hours and so we offer some appointments on Saturday which is not a service frequently offered.
Your first contact should be with the scheme administrators as they can provide all the information you are likely to need about the benefits payable through the scheme. Clarity Pension Guidance 4 U is not really a service designed for members of final salary schemes as the options available are not usually open to final salary members. However, if you have a fund from voluntary contributions that does not give a defined benefit, the options could be of interest to you.
It is not usually possible to transfer within 1 year of the scheme retirement age. Although it is possible to transfer before that, it is rarely advisable because valuable guaranteed benefits can be lost. To help protect members the Financial Conduct Authority states that financial advice must be obtained by the member before the scheme can transfer benefits out if the cash value of the benefits exceeds £30,000. It is a good idea to obtain advice even where benefits are valued below £30,000 and indeed many providers will not accept a transfer that is coming from a defined benefit scheme if advice has not been sought.
A defined contribution plan is where you or your employer pay into a pension plan but you do not know until taking it how much benefit/income you will get out of it. Such plans will commonly be known as personal pension plans; stakeholder pensions; XYZ employers money purchase scheme or Free Standing AVCs. There are other types so please contact us if you are unsure.
A defined benefit scheme, sometimes known as final salary schemes (or variations of) tells you how much income you will receive from the scheme. The rules have what are known as accrual rates that set out how much each year you are with the scheme you will earn as a benefit.
Pensions cannot be accessed until age 55 except in limited circumstances. Caution needs to exercised when anyone tells you otherwise. Debt can be over whelming. There are agencies that can help you. Citizens Advice Bureau are available to give details or debt guidance
Some benefits can be affected. Clarity Guidance 4 U cannot give advice on the benefit system as it falls outside the scope of what we do. More information can be obtained from the Department of Work and Pensions direct or if you would like help Citizens Advice Bureau can assist.