Government names guidance guarantee service

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The government has today (12 January) revealed that its guidance guarantee service will be called Pension wise. 

The creation of Pension wise follows measures announced in the 2014 Budget to provide access to free and impartial guidance on how savers can make the most of the new pension freedoms, which come into effect in April 2015.

Described by the Treasury as guidance rather than advice, the service is designed to help employees appreciate the value of independent advice.

A statement from the Treasury said: “Pensions are complex, so people need help to navigate the landscape and Pension wise should provide a pathfinder and information to help people on their retirement journey.

“It is really important to invest in improving financial education for our ageing population.”

Ros Altmann, an independent policy expert and champion for older workers, said: “Employees and employers need an extensive publicity campaign to ensure ‘Pension wise’ becomes a strong recognised trusted brand. The service must be widely marketed by the government with a broad publicity campaign to ensure people know what it is, and use it.

“Increasing financial awareness is long overdue and the pensions industry has taken advantage of poorly-informed staff for far too long.

“However, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is still not forcing pension companies to issue standardised pension statements. But a guidance session with Pension wise will provide information and explanations of the complex array of choices open to people when reaching their pension age.”