Pensioners could sell annuities for cash

Retired people could be allowed to sell their pensions for cash under plans that have been proposed by pensions minister Steve Webb.

Steve Webb

According to a statement from the Liberal Democrats, Webb’s proposals, which could benefit around five million people, would allow pensioners to sell annuities for cash to organisations such as insurance firms.  

The pension freedoms announced in last year’s Budget mean that from April savers aged 55 or over can take their retirement savings in any way they choose with 25% of the fund available as a tax-free lump sum. However, at the moment, the changes do not benefit retired pensioners who are already locked into annuities until they die.  

In a statement Webb said: “The Budget freedoms for people who have yet to use their pension pot have been widely welcomed.

”But the millions of people who have already been forced to buy an annuity are so far missing out on these new freedoms.”

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He added that he is working on plans to get the freedoms extended to those who are receiving an annuity but who might prefer a cash lump sum.