Proposals to give people greater access to their pensions information have been unveiled by the government.
New free, user-friendly ‘pensions dashboards’ would allow people to access their information from most pension schemes in one place online for the first time.
The aim is to give people accurate, easy to understand, secure information about their pensions. It should also clearly show how much people have saved in their pension pots and what income they can expect in retirement. It is hoped that by giving people greater access to their pension pots they will feel more in control and will be able to find ‘lost’ pots.
Guy Opperman, Minister for Pensions and Financial Inclusion, said: “Plain pensions information at the touch of a screen will ensure better-informed, more engaged savers and help many more people to plan effectively for retirement.
“Bringing pensions information into the digital age has the potential to revolutionise the way we all think about and plan for later life. People, young and old, should have all the help they need to get ready for retirement and maximise their pension incomes and, working with industry, we will ensure they do.”
It is envisaged the first pensions dashboard will be established in 2019, with multiple dashboards to be introduced in the following years subject to the necessary consumer protection being in place. Eventually they will also include information about the individual’s entitlement to the state pension.
Development and design of dashboards will be industry-led and facilitated by government which has committed to legislate where necessary. A feasibility report into pensions dashboards, which forms the starting point for consultation on a range of matters including delivery models and governance, has been published.
“The government is right to recognise that pensions dashboards must work for consumers – so we welcome today’s steps towards achieving what could be a game-changing improvement to the way people manage their pensions,” commented Jenni Allen, Managing Director, Which? Money.
“Every dashboard must display all the important information consumers need in a clear and accessible way, allowing them to easily understand their pension savings and the costs involved. It’s crucial that all schemes are included, alongside the state pension, so that savers are able to make informed decisions about their retirement savings and plan their lives accordingly,” she added.