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When planning for retirement, you need to know how much you can expect to receive from any workplace pensions and personal pensions as well as how much your state pension will be.
People will often have worked for several different employers during their working life, so may well have “lost” the details of a pension they may be eligible for. Normally a pension scheme will send a statement each year. But if you haven’t received one recently, it may be because you have moved home and not updated a pension provider with your new details. Or possibly the employer no longer exists. You can lose track of personal pensions as well.
Fortunately, it is easier to find if you have a “lost” pension than it used to be. There are three ways to trace a lost pension:
If you think you might have a “lost” pension, the next step is to put together enough information to try and trace it.
If it was a workplace pension, the following information will be helpful: employer’s name, the type of business it was, if it has changed address and the dates you were in the pension scheme. You can then contact the employer with your National Insurance number, the dates you started and stopped working there and if possible the dates you joined and left the pension scheme. There is a template letter to send to your employer, available at the Money Advice Service website. (This is a Word format document, so you may need to access it on a PC so you can edit it.)
If you had a personal pension, you should try contacting the pension provider. The following information will help them track down your plan: Your plan number, your date of birth, your National Insurance number, the date your pension was set up. There is a template letter to send to your pension provider, available at the Money Advice Service website. (This is a Word format document, so you may need to access it on a PC so you can edit it.)
If you are struggling to find your lost pension, perhaps because you can’t get in contact with your old employer, or your old pension provider, you should contact the Pension Tracing Service. This should provide you with the contact details of the pension provider but won’t give any other details. You can then contact the pension provider and find out if you do have a pension.
Other useful websites are:
You might also like to get a forecast for your state pension to help with your retirement planning. Using the gov.uk website you can get an idea of the age you will qualify and how much it is likely to be as well as ways you can “top it up”.
For help with this or other matters, please contact us via Advice line South on 03444 111 306 or pop in and see us.