Don’t miss out on lost pensions!
Over the course of our working lives, it’s likely that we’ll hold a number of different jobs. This can make it tricky to keep track of exactly how many pensions we’ve paid into.
According to the Association of British Insurers (ABI), the average person now has 11 jobs over their lifetime, which means it can be easier than you think to lose track of which pensions you’ve paid into with which employers.
Research the ABI carried out in 2020 showed that a total of around 1.6 million private pension pots worth around £19.4 billion remain unclaimed – that’s the equivalent of almost £13,000 per ‘lost’ pot.
Thankfully, it’s easy to trace any pensions you may have lost touch with, you’ll just need:
- your National Insurance number, and
- the names of your previous employer(s)
Once you have this information, go to the Government’s Pension Tracing Service.
This service won’t confirm whether you have a pension or what its value might be, but it will let you know who your former employer’s pension provider is and how you can contact them.
What can I do if I find my lost pensions?
If you’re reunited with a pension you’d lost track of, you have a couple of options:
Transfer your pension into your current workplace pension
Find out whether your current pension provider would accept a transfer in of the value of your ‘lost’ pension and move your older pension into your current plan. This could make things easier for you to manage.
Leave your pension where it is
Some older workplace pensions may include valuable additional benefits, like a spouse’s or dependent’s pension, that get paid out to your beneficiaries when you die.
Before you decide what to do with your ‘lost’ pension, we recommend taking regulated financial advice. An adviser will be able to let you know the best thing to do for you and your circumstances. You can find one near you at Unbiased.
You can also call the Pension Tracing Service on 0800 731 0193 or +44 (0)191 215 4491 if you’re outside the UK.
However you get in touch, the service is free to use.