INFORMATION FOR FINANCIAL ADVISERS
The following information sheet is intended for financial advisers and provides further questions and answers to help them advise their clients (our policyholders):
INFORMATION FOR POLICYHOLDERS
We hope that the questions and answers below provide you with the information you need. If not, please contact us.
- Will COVID-19 affect my pension?
Your pension is safe and secure. Despite the impact this pandemic has had on the global economy and financial markets, whether you are a pensioner receiving your pension or a policyholder with a pension due when you retire, the benefits we have promised to pay you now and in the future will not be impacted.
For more information on how COVID-19 may affect our response times and how you can help us to help you go to: Your Policy
- Will Brexit affect my pension?
For the majority of our policyholders we do not believe that the UK leaving the European Union (EU) will affect our ability to administer your policy, regardless of where you reside.
There are a small number of policies, our Irish Portfolio, where we may not be able to continue to make pension payments lawfully as a result of Brexit following the end of the implementation period agreed with the EU and any additional period provided for by the Irish government. We are therefore proposing to transfer the affected policies to an Irish insurance company regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.
The affected policies were originally written by Rothesay Assurance Limited (formerly MetLife Assurance Limited).
Before being issued with individual policies, the affected policyholders were members of one of the following pension schemes:
- The Clondalkin Group Executive Pension Scheme
- The Fujitsu Services (Ireland) Pension Plan
- The Scottish Legal Life Pension Scheme – ROI Section
- Element Six Contributory Pension Plan
- The Georgia Pacific Ireland Retirement Benefits Scheme
Please note that former members of the UK Section of The Scottish Legal Life Pension Scheme are not affected by this proposed transfer.
- How can I protect myself from scammers?
If anyone contacts you out of the blue about your pension, there is a high chance that it is a scam - do not give them your details
To learn how to protect yourself from pension scams visit The Financial Conduct Authority’s website www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart
In addition Age UK, the leading charity for older people, has produced an ‘Avoiding scams’ leaflet which you may find helpful. Please click on the following link w to open the guide: Avoiding scams - smart ways to protect yourself
- Why might I want to contact Rothesay Life and if I do what contact details should I use?
If you are a Policyholder there are a number of reasons why you may want to contact us including:
- Updating your personal and Dependant details
- Updating your Expression of Wish form
- Updating your bank account details
- Requesting your pension benefit details
- Requesting a transfer value quotation
- Requesting a retirement quotation
- What happens if I make a complaint?
We will provide a solution as quickly as possible. Please provide your policy number or National Insurance number when contacting us to help us do so. We will then:
- Acknowledge your complaint within five working days of receipt of your call or correspondence
- Investigate your complaint thoroughly and endeavour to send a final response to you within four weeks of receipt of your complaint. If we are unable to provide you with a final response within this time we will send you an update
- Endeavour to send a final response to you within 8 weeks of receipt of your complaint. If we are unable to provide you with a final response within this time frame, we will write to you explaining why and advise you when you can expect a final response
If it has been more than eight weeks since you informed us of your complaint and it has not been satisfactorily resolved, you may contact the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) using the details below.
- From UK: 0800 023 4567 or 0300 123 9123
- From abroad : +44 20 7964 0500
Post: Exchange Tower, London, E14 9SR
You have the right to refer your complaint to the FOS free of charge. However, you must do so within six months of our final letter to you regarding your claim.
- Why is my pension now with Rothesay Life?
We provide bulk annuities and de-risking solutions for defined benefit pension schemes and other insurance companies. As a result of either a buy-out or a part VII transfer you now have a Policy with us (see below):
- Buy-out: The trustees of your Scheme transferred your pension benefits (along with those of some or all of the other members of your Scheme) to Rothesay Life. We issued you with a pension annuity policy and you became a direct policyholder of Rothesay Life (“a Policyholder”)
- Part VII transfer: You (and others) had a pension policy with another insurance company and that insurance company transferred the obligation to pay the pension benefits under the policies you (and the others) had with them to Rothesay Life. Following a court approved process, you became a direct policyholder of Rothesay Life (“a Policyholder”)
- Why did the trustees of my Scheme or another insurance company transfer my pension benefits to Rothesay Life?
- How do my pension benefits compare under my Policy with Rothesay Life with those I had in my Scheme or another insurance company?
Your pension benefits have been determined in accordance with the insurance arrangement that the trustees of your Scheme or the other insurance company secured with us.
- How do I get a summary of my pension benefits?
Please request details of your benefits by contacting us using the contact details on the Contact Us page.
- Do I have to pay any charges connected to my Policy?
No, there are no charges on your Policy.
- I paid Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVCs) into my previous scheme. Are my AVCs covered by my Policy?
- Can I transfer my policy to another pension arrangement?
If you are under 65, you may be able to transfer the value of your benefits to another registered pension arrangement. This may give you more options regarding your benefits. For example you may be able to take a larger cash lump sum (please note some of this may be subject to tax).
- What options do I have on retirement?
When you reach retirement, you may be able to take up to 25% of the value of your pension benefits as a tax-free cash lump sum. This may be provided by converting part of your pension benefit into cash (i.e. you will receive a lower annual pension as a result of choosing to take your tax-free cash lump sum).
- When do you start paying me my pension?
If you are over age 55, you may be able to retire before your Normal Retirement Date. If your pension starts to be paid early, your pension payments will usually be reduced to take into account the likelihood that your pension will be paid for longer.
You may also be able to delay your pension. If your pension starts to be paid after your Normal Retirement Date, your payments will usually be increased to take into account the likelihood that your pension will be paid for a shorter period.
If you are interested in retiring please contact us using the details on the Contact Us page.
- How do you pay my pension?
We will pay your pension directly into your bank or building society account. The account will need to be a personal account in your name or a personal joint account of which you are one of the account holders. We cannot pay into a business account nor make payment by cheque. Note that there may be occasions where we are not able to pay to certain bank accounts due to country sanction controls.
To confirm or change the bank account you want us to use for your pension please contact us using the contact details on the Contact Us page.
- Will you contact me before I’m due to retire?
Yes, we will contact you a year before your Normal Retirement Date.
- Will I pay tax on my pension income?
Income tax is payable on your pension income in the same way as it is on earnings although your marginal rate of tax may be lower when you stop working. We’ll use your tax code to determine how much tax to deduct from your pension before paying the remainder to your chosen bank account.
- What happens to my Policy if I die before I start to receive my benefits?
In the event of your death, your Dependants and/or other Beneficiaries may be entitled to a lump sum payment and/or have a pension made payable to them. Please make sure we have an up-to-date Expression of Wish form to help guide us on who should receive any cash sum if you die.
- What happens to my Policy if I die after I start to receive my benefits?
In the event of your death after retirement, your Policy may provide:
- When do I need to complete an Expression of Wish form?
You can complete an Expression of Wish form at any time.
If you have not yet completed one we recommend that you complete a form as soon as possible.
You should also consider completing a new Expression of Wish form (to update your death benefit nomination(s)) if your personal circumstances change.
If you have submitted more than one Expression of Wish form, we will only take the latest we have received into account in the event of your death.
- What happens if I die before I submit an Expression of Wish form?
The fact that you have not completed an Expression of Wish form will not prevent us from paying any lump sum death benefits in accordance with the terms of your Policy, but we will have no way of taking your wishes into account when deciding who will receive the payment.
- How many people can I nominate on my Expression of Wish form?
You can nominate as many people as you wish.
If you nominate more than one person please specify (as a percentage) the proportion of the lump sum death benefit that you would like each individual to receive. The total proportions must equal 100%.
If you would like your benefits to be paid to an individual upon your death please provide their full name including their surname, all forenames and their title (e.g. "Mrs Mary Jane Smith").
If you would like your benefits to be paid to your estate upon your death, please write “To My Estate”.