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Dear Tricia.

Need some financial advice? Your Money editor Tricia Phillips and her team can help QI AM fast approaching retirement (February next year). However, a friend of mine told me that my pension may be worthless if I wait until then and I may be better taking benefits now. Is this advice correct? AYOUR friend may be correct. An EU Directive comes into force on December 21 which means that men will no longer receive higher annuity rates than women based on life expectancy. As a male it may well be worth considering taking benefits early if you are close to retirement. Email enquiries@themoneymap.co.uk for a free annuity quotation form.

QI HAVE recently found out my wife will have to go into care. I have savings of more than PS70,000 in my name, but my wife's savings are limited to just a few hundred and our joint bank account is for day-today expenses, so has no balance to speak of. Will my savings be taken into account when assessing the cost of care? ANO, your savings will not be taken into account in this scenario.

The local authority only has the right to assess the finances of the person who needs the care.

This may include the value of your home if she is an owner - this includes joint ownership.

QI HAVE been advised to take out term assurance to cover my repayment mortgage. Can you tell me what this is please? ATERM Assurance provides a lump sum if death occurs within the term of the contract, for example 25 years.

It has no surrender or investment value.

Level term assurance provides a lump sum on death, which remains the same throughout the term of the contract.

However, the most cost-effective way of providing cover for your repayment mortgage is decreasing term.

The level of cover falls as your mortgage debt reduces and this is reflected in the cost.

jTHANKS to our independent financial advisers - The Money Map (0800 848 8250) and PMI's John Stewart (0800 018 3751). For independent advice send an SAE to Your Money Independent Advice Bureau, Daily Mirror, 1 Canada Square, Canary Wharf, London E14 5AP.

Please give your age, income, family circumstances and details of the financial products you want advice on, along with your phone number. Or email money@mirror.co.uk marked "advice".
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Nov 7, 2012
Words:393
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