Thousands of Scunthorpe steel pensioners given extra time to decide on the future of their investments
British Steel pensioners have been given longer to decide on the future of their investments
By Scunthorpe Telegraph | Posted: 5 Dec 2017
The deadline for the estimated 20,000 British Steel pensioners in North Lincolnshire to decide on the future of their investments has been extended.
The original deadline of next Monday (December 11) has been put back until Friday, December 22.
The pensioners who are stake-holders in a £15 billion-plus fund have been given three options.
Those options are to transfer to a new fund set up with cash from Tata Steel UK, move with the present scheme to one under the control of the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) or cash in their savings.
If they fail to meet the December 22 deadline, their savings will remain in the current scheme, to go into the hands of the PPF from March 2018.
The extended deadline follows five packed question and answer sessions with pension officials at The Baths Hall in Scunthorpe.
Pension fund trustee chairman Allan Johnston said: "As a British Steel pensioner myself, I appreciate why our members are so keen to understand their options and to make the right choice for them and their families.
Pensioners pictured leaving the Baths Hall, Scunthorpe following a meeting to explain the new British Steel Pension Scheme options.
"We have extended the deadline until December 22 to give members more time but we urge those who haven’t yet returned their completed option forms to do so before the deadline.
"We are conscious that some members have been trying to access independent financial advice and action has been taken to ensure that all firms contacting members are doing so on the basis of offering appropriate, independent advice and are not exploiting members.
"If members wish to get independent financial advice, we urge them to find an appropriate, regulated, independent financial advisor. Details of appropriate firms can be found at www.unbiased.co.uk
"Members have been sent personal information packs and for most people, the choice will be straightforward. For some members, however, the best choice will depend on their personal circumstances and preferences.
"Members considering transferring out their scheme benefits to another pension arrangement should think carefully before doing so as they would be giving up guaranteed future pension income in return for income that might not be guaranteed and could vary depending on how it is managed.
"In the meantime, members should still choose between the new scheme and the PPF, in case they decide not to transfer out."
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