State Pension: The flat rate State Pension, good news or an opportunity missed?

State Pension: The flat rate State Pension, good news or an opportunity missed?The announcement that the government plans to introduce a new flat rate State Pension will dominate the news for a few days to come. Many pension experts have welcomed the changes, siting a simpler system, which will better target those most in need, however after assessing the detail a growing number of dissenting voices can now be heard. So, is the flat rate State Pension as good ...

Self invested pensions: The comeback of the SSAS

The comeback of the SSASWhen we think of self invested pensions our thoughts immediately turn to a SIPP (Self Invested Personal Pension). However, the SIPP's lesser known cousin, the SSAS (Small Self Administered Scheme), seems to be making a bit of a comeback. A SSAS has always had the same investment powers at a SIPP, indeed in some circumstances, especially for loans, it is more flexible. Despite this SSAS's have for some years lagged behind SIPPs in popularity, but over recent months they ...

State Pensions: Stay at home mums no longer penalised

Work and Pensions Secretary, Iain Duncan-Smith, has announced that stay at home mums will no longer be penalised when the time comes to draw their State Pension. At present many stay at home mums, as well as carers, do not qualify for a full State Pension as they have not paid National Insurance contributions for the required 30 years. However, under new reforms it seems as though both groups will now qualify for a full State Pension. Flat rate State Pension from 2015...

New state pension proposals: Are you a winner or loser?

Investment Sense Verdict_istockUpdated 15th January 2013: Over the past few days the media have extensively covered the proposed government reforms of the State Pension system and the announcement of a new flat rate State Pension. Under the proposals a new flat rate State Pension will be introduced, "not before" April 2017, of £140 per week. After adjustment for inflation this would be approximately £160 by the time it is introduced. To qualify for the new flat rate an individual would need to ...