The auto-enrolment solution for Northern Ireland
Posted in General News and Newsletters
A major event like Coronavirus has caused financial uncertainty for both employers and employees. Many people are worried about their own and their loved ones’ physical health at the moment, but it is important to think about how Coronavirus could impact their financial wellbeing too.
We have contacted all members of the Scheme recently by email to provide updates on how the Coronavirus could affect their pension, where to get advice and how to protect themselves from scams.
You may wish to use this information to assist your staff with questions they may raise with you or could use it in your next staff newsletter.
How will Coronavirus affect my pension?
As a pension investor, it can be worrying to see your pension fall in value. That said, it is important to remember that your pension is a long-term investment. Looking at the historical performance of share markets experience shows that eventually markets do recover. Neither the Workers Pension Trust nor the Trustees are suggesting you take any direct action – they are neither qualified nor authorised to provide financial advice.
It is strongly recommended if you are thinking about amending your investment choices that you consider seeking independent financial advice.
Where can I get financial advice or guidance?
If you need help, the Money and Pensions Service brings together three respected financial guidance bodies: the Money Advice Service, The Pensions Advisory Service and Pension Wise.
It’s important you make the best decision for your own personal circumstances, so you should consider using the services of a financial adviser. If you do opt for an adviser, be sure to use one that is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and never take investment advice from a company that contacted you unsolicited, or an adviser they suggest, as this may be part of the scam.
Check they are not a clone – a common scam is to pretend to be a genuine FCA-authorised firm (called a ‘clone firm’). Always use the contact details on the FCA Register, not the details the firm gives you.
Check the Financial Services Register to make sure that anyone offering you advice or other financial services is FCA authorised, and they are permitted to provide those services regarding pensions. If you need any help checking, call the FCA Consumer Helpline on 0800 111 6768.
How can I protect myself from Coronavirus (Covid-19) scams?
Pension scams are on the increase in the UK. Every day, fraudsters are using sophisticated ways to part savers from their money and a lifetime’s savings can be lost in moments.
Watch out for scams related to coronavirus (Covid-19). These scams take many forms and could be about insurance policies, pensions transfers, or high-return investment opportunities. Scammers are sophisticated, opportunistic and will try many things. They are also very likely to target the vulnerable. Beware of investments that appear to be too good be true.
Read how to avoid coronavirus scams to find out more about potential scams, how they could affect you and how to protect yourself.
Scammers might try to persuade you to cash in your pension – either the whole lot or a large sum – and hand the money to them to invest.
Watch out particularly for people contacting you out of the blue or adverts claiming to offer free pension reviews or no-obligation consultations.
To help protect yourself you should:
There is further advice on the FCA’s ScamSmart website about how to protect yourself and if you suspect you may have been contacted in what could be a scam.
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