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AT last, there's a glimmer [...]; Cash point.

Byline: TRICIA PHILLIPS

AT last, there's a glimmer of hope for pensioners with Government changes to both state and private pensions.

From April the Basic State Pension will increase by pounds 4.50 to pounds 102.15 a week - the first time it has gone over the pounds 100 mark.

Those on Pension Credit will see a pounds 4.75 increase to their guaranteed credit, giving them pounds 137.35 a week and pounds 209.70 for couples.

Anyone who has saved into a private pension will no longer be forced to turn pension pots into an annuity (a lifetime income) by the age of 75.

This will give people greater flexibility to leave savings in a fund and to continue investing or withdraw money when needed, rather than having a guaranteed set retirement income.

This will mean any remaining funds can be passed on to family in the event of death.

However, there will be a limit on how much can be taken from a fund at any one time to stop people spending all their savings and then relying on state handouts.

The controversial plan to make it easier for private pension companies to use the less generous Consumer Price Index, rather than the Retail Price Index, when calculating increases will no longer go ahead.

Scheme rules that say increases will be based on RPI will have to continue, although employers may attempt to get trustees to change this in order to reduce costs.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Dec 10, 2010
Words:246
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