UK expats missing out on £850 million of unclaimed pensions

Contributed by Find My Lost Pension, 12 February, 2015

UK pension schemes are unable to pay pensions, tax-free lump sums and refund of contributions to over 250,000 former pension scheme members living abroad.

Data collected by the website reveal a wide geographical distribution of expats with unclaimed pension pots built up over the last forty years.

FindMyLostPension's research shows that private and public sector pension schemes in the UK have lost track of more than a quarter of a million expats living in Europe, South Africa, The Middle & Far East, Australia, The Caribbean & North America.

Amongst the £850 million of benefits left in limbo are pensions ranging from £2,000 to £30,000 a year with tax-free lump-sums from £500 to £40,000.

Paul Lalwan, Co-founder of commented: 

"The problem of lost pensions in the UK is long-standing. It's very difficult and expensive for pension schemes to trace expats and surviving partners who are owed a pension using traditional UK based tracing methods.

However we live now in a connected world and scheme trustees are exploiting the global reach of the Internet with partners such as to re-unite UK expats with their unclaimed pension pots.

And the new UK pensions legislation coming into force in April 2015 means expats over the age of fifty-five have the opportunity to turn annual pension pots into tax-free lump-sums."

Tags: Europe | North America | Africa | pensions | South Africa | Australia | legislation | public sector | tax |