Helping make senseof pension jargon

The local Citizens Advice is on a mission to clear up pension jargon which is baffling consumers.

Thursday, 17th March 2016, 2:04 pm
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 12:00 am
MHLC-29-01-10 CAB Logo Feb27- Citizens Advice Bureau Offices, Hamilton Terrace, Leamington Spa .

“Flexi-access drawdown”, “open market option” and “safeguarded benefits” are some of the pension terms most confusing for consumers, reveals Citizens Advice 1066.

The local charity, which delivers face-to-face Pension Wise appointments - free of charge - across East Sussex, says people would find it easier to understand their pensions if the industry used simple, standard language to describe their products.

Some people are even unclear about terms which appear to be more straightforward, putting them at risk of missing out on the best pension options for them.

For instance Citizens Advice have reported cases where consumers wrongly believed that their “selected retirement date” was set in stone as the date they could access their pension, when in fact they could have accessed their savings earlier.

Recent research from Citizens Advice shows more than a quarter (27 percent) of people with defined contribution pensions feel that they don’t understand their pension plan, while fewer than one in five (19 per cent) feel very confident.

Cordelia Woollard, Pension Wise manager at Citizens Advice 1066 said: “Pension decisions can be hard enough without having to translate tricky wording.

“Many people coming to visit us are mystified by the jargon being used and our staff are here to help clear up the confusing language.

“Having a better understanding of what the terms mean puts consumers on a better path to choosing a retirement option which suits them.”

To book a free face to face or telephone Pension Wise appointment, call 0300 330 1001 or visit You can also book an appointment by visiting your local Citizens Advice bureau.

The Citizens Advice service comprises a network of local bureaux, all of which are independent charities, the Citizens Advice consumer service and national charity Citizens Advice. Together they help people resolve their money, legal and other problems by providing information and guidance, and by influencing policy makers.

The service provided by Citizens Advice is free, independent, confidential and impartial, and available to everyone regardless of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, religion, age or nationality.

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