The Atticus Papers

Bringing clarity to finance

Friday 25th June, 2021

What happens to my pension when I die? - a guide to pension death benefits (UK)

This video explains what happens to your pension benefits when you die. It highlights who you can leave your pension to, how the pension death benefits are distributed by the pension trustees and how things have changed since pension freedoms were introduced in April 2015. It also explains the tax treatment of the pension death benefits based on whether you die before age 75 or after age 75. Lastly, it highlights how tax beneficial it can be to leave your pension to beneficiaries, while using non-pension assets to fund your retirement.

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Friday 18th June, 2021

Six ways to boost your pension

"How can I increase my pension in the run up to retirement?" This is a question that many of us ask, as retirement looms, quite often no more than three or four years away. This is because our pensions, despite their crucial role in funding potentially a third of our life's expenditure requirements, are often our most neglected assets. They simply sit forgotten in the background, unattended for thirty or forty years, until we suddenly become acutely aware of their importance and how insufficient our provision up to this point has been. Now, there are no quick fixes. Building a pension pot sufficient to provide for your retirement is a long term activity, and you cannot make up for a 30 years of underfunding in 3 years or less. However, there are a few things you can do to improve your position. In the guide below, I explain six of these options that can help to increase your pension pot and retirement income, and ensure that your pension is best positioned to meet your needs.

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Sunday 6th June, 2021

The impact of fees and charges on investment returns - active versus passive investment

I am often asked by investors, "Am I paying too much for my investments?". So, what is the impact of costs on your investments and does it matter? The answer to this question is far more nuanced than many realise and really depends on what your personal preferences and beliefs are, and what you are trying to achieve. It also invariably involves a comparison of active versus passive investment. In the article below, I will firstly highlight the impact of costs on investment returns over time, underlining the importance of this subject. I will then explain the difference between active and passive investment strategies. Lastly, I will endeavour to explain our reasons for favouring passive investment strategies for generating investment growth and returns.

Read about active versus passive investment

Tuesday 1st June, 2021

How do you pay for financial advice - a complete guide to financial adviser charges and fees

I am often asked by people, "How do I pay for financial advice? What fees do financial advisers charge?" This is an incredibly important question, as fees and charges create a drag on investment performance. If they are too high, how are you to make the investment returns you need to achieve your goals? If they are too complicated, how are you to know if they are too high? There are many people who could benefit from taking financial advice. There is a mountain of evidence that shows that taking financial advice makes a real difference. However, many people are put off by the fees and charges. We have therefore put together this guide to help explain all the charges involved in paying for financial advice, including the advice fees and the fees on the investments and platforms themselves.

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Wednesday 26th May, 2021

The Pension Lifetime Allowance - What is it and how does it work?

The Lifetime Allowance is a limit on the amount of pension benefit that can be accrued by an individual across all pension schemes during their lifetime. How and when it is applied has continued to create confusion, and the potential for substantial charges for exceeding the Lifetime Allowance threshold has created a great deal of fear amongst anybody approaching this cap on pension accrual. This brief guide will explain what the Lifetime Allowance is, how pensions are valued for Lifetime Allowance purposes, when the test is applied and how the Lifetime Allowance charge is calculated.

Read about what a PLA is, or watch our video...

If you would like further information, please don’t hesitate to ask us for one of our more complete digital guides to finance.