Karen Barrett, Chief Executive of unbiased.co.uk, comments on the ‘guidance guarantee’, for those with defined contribution pensions, announced in the Chancellor’s Budget

19 Mar 2014

"The announcement from the Chancellor about the introduction of a ‘guidance guarantee’, to everyone who retires with a defined contribution pension, is hugely positive to hear.

"Unbiased.co.uk has always championed the need for advice at retirement. The Government’s guidance initiative is the first positive step in ensuring that anyone approaching retirement is at the very least considering their income options, in order for them to make an informed decision. We have been providing consumers with a route to advice for the last two decades and would welcome the opportunity to work with the FCA to input into the development of these standards. The guidance process being established should ensure a better understanding of retirement income options and the choices that are available to consumers.

"However, it’s crucial to remember that guidance is not the same as advice and it will be interesting to see the exact details of what is being offered from April 2015. Consumers need to be able to recognise the difference between guidance and advice. It's vital that what is being offered is clearly labelled; that the route to advice is clear, and consumers understand the benefits that regulated whole of market advice can add at this stage, over and above guidance.

"It’s important that anyone reviewing their options speaks to a whole of market adviser to ensure they are getting the right advice for their particular circumstances and making the best decision for their retirement income, whether that is purchasing a financial product or taking a lump sum. The Government’s announced changes to lift pension caps and restrictions means that there will now be even more options available to consumers which only a professional financial adviser who specialises in that area will be able to offer advice on. We know that advice can lead to a significant uplift in retirement income and better outcomes. Deciding your income at retirement is one of, if not the biggest financial decisions a person will make in their lifetime."

Notes to editors:

For more information contact:

Anna Schirmer / Emily Falla / Kate Aitchison: 020 7294 3682

For expert commentary or case studies from over 200 media-friendly advisers, journalists should visit unbiased.co.uk Bluebook - the media adviser directory
Twitter: @unbiased_co_uk
LinkedIn: unbiased.co.uk - online networking for professional advisers

About unbiased.co.uk, the professional advice website:

Unbiased.co.uk is the UK's most comprehensive free professional adviser search website, focused on empowering users with the resources they need to make better informed financial and legal decisions.  We not only help consumers and businesses find the best adviser for their needs from 25,000 IFAs, financial advisers, mortgage advisers, solicitors and accountants listed on our search, but we also help them research the market by providing relevant information and tools.  At unbiased.co.uk we are transparent about what we do and provide the easiest way for consumers to find and compare advisers meeting their requirements.
The unbiased.co.uk website launched in 1998 and rapidly became the UK’s leading online destination for consumers and businesses looking to find an adviser.  Now attracting over one million visitors a year, unbiased.co.uk is the default adviser directory for consumer websites recommending their audience to ‘find an adviser’.
Unbiased.co.uk has launched a new industry-facing website for the adviser community at business.unbiased.co.uk.  

Unbiased Ltd promotes the benefits of financial and legal advice to consumers and businesses and would like to thank the following companies for their support:

Alliance Trust



Opinium Research

AXA Wealth


Bright Grey

Royal London 360°

Canada Life Ltd

Santander Asset Management

Legal & General



Scottish Life


Standard Life Assurance Limited


Zurich Intermediary Group

Unbiased Ltd - Registered Office: 12-14 Berry St, London, EC1V 0AU.  Registered in England: No. 06775878.

Category: Financial Planning Tagged: guidance guarantee, pensions, retirement, The Budget

More press releases on Financial Planning