How do I make a lump sum withdrawal?

If you request a tax-free lump sum when joining Smart Retire, we will pay this to your nominated bank account before opening your account.

For other lump sum withdrawals, sign in to your account and select your rainy day pot. Click on make payment and select the amount you want to claim.

Remember, after you've taken your tax-free lump sum any further withdrawals will be taxed at your marginal rate. If required, you can take some money from another pot and top up your rainy day pot but that will reduce the value of the other pot.

How will I be paid the lump sum?

Payment will be made into your nominated bank account after tax has been deducted (when applicable). This could take up to eight working days.

How will income tax be calculated on the lump sum?

If you request a tax-free lump sum when joining Smart Retire, there will be no tax deduction from this payment.
For further lump sum withdrawals, income tax is calculated through Pay As You Earn. 

You can reclaim any overpaid tax by contacting HMRC.

You should also be aware that claiming a lump sum could result in your earnings for the current tax year putting you into a higher rate tax band. You might want to consider spreading your withdrawals over different tax years.

How do I start or stop receiving a regular income?

To start or restart income payment, sign in to your account and select your flexible income pot. Click on change income, select the monthly amount you require, and we will start making regular payments. We will show you how long we expect the selected income to last.

To stop receiving an income, log on to your account and select your flexible income pot. Click on change income and select £0.00.

We'll stop your regular income payments. We will show you how much we think might be in this pot at your later life age if you don’t take any more payments.

How do I change my regular income?

  1. Sign in to your account.
  2. Select Flexible income pot
  3. Select Change income.
  4. Choose how much monthly income you want. 
  5. Check how long we estimate the income will last.

To change in time for your next payment day, you need to update your account at least 14 working days before.

Payment day is usually the 25th of the month. If the 25th is a weekend or holiday, you get paid on the working day before.

Transfers and annuities

What is an annuity?

An annuity is a policy issued by a life assurance company where the company guarantees to pay an income in return for receiving your pension pot. In effect, if you live a long time you could receive more back than your pot was worth but your dependants could receive back less than your pot if you die early.

How do I arrange the purchase of an annuity?

You can buy an annuity with the value of your Smart Retire account at any time. You should shop around to find the company that offers the biggest income, and give careful consideration to the type of annuity that suits your needs. We recommend you speak to an independent financial advisor when deciding what to do with your pension savings. If you need financial advice, you can find independent financial advisers at https://directory.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en

Where can I transfer my funds to?

You can transfer to another pension scheme registered in the UK that has personal pensions and pension drawdown plans. Check with your provider to see if they will accept crystallised funds. If they do, you may have to transfer it to a new account rather than an existing account.

You may be able to transfer to a qualifying recognised overseas pension scheme (QROPS) but this is subject to conditions. Further information can be found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/overseas-pensions-pension-transfers

How much will my transfer value be?

The transfer value will be the combined value of all your pots at the time it is paid. There is no penalty or charge for transferring out.

How do I arrange payment of a transfer value?

Once you have selected a scheme to receive your transfer you should apply for membership of that scheme. The new scheme administrators will contact Smart Retire to obtain payment.

Beware of pension transfer scams

We recommend you exercise extreme caution if you are asked to transfer your pension savings.

Watch out for text messages, letters, emails or phone calls offering to help you with your pension savings. You might be put under pressure to make a quick decision or to take a cash inducement. If you do transfer to a fraudulent account, you could lose all your pension savings.

For more information about spotting scams visit www.thepensionsregulator.gov.uk/pension-scams.

If you suspect a scam, report it to the Financial Conduct Authority’s consumer helpline on 0800 111 6768 or Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

You can also contact The Pensions Advisory Service, who will be able to provide guidance, on 0800 011 3797 or at www.pensionsadvisoryservice.org.uk.

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