How do I find my workplace pensions?
What’s all this about lost pensions?
There are £19.4 billion pounds worth of ‘lost’ pensions in the UK, according to the Association of British Insurers. That’s 1.6 million pension pots worth about £13,000 each!
How does this happen?
From the age of 22 (and sometimes before this!) you’re likely to have joined a workplace pension provided by your employer. Different employers offer pension schemes with different providers, so you might have several pensions from all of your past employers.
Pensions can be ‘lost’ when you change jobs. If you don’t move your pension scheme, it stays with your previous employer. You don’t lose the money you’ve built up, it just gets ‘parked’.
How can I find my old pensions?
If you’ve lost track of your pensions, or aren’t sure whether you’ve previously had one, tracking them down will give you a better idea of how much money you have. This will help you to plan your dream retirement.
While the pension providers should be contacting you each year, they might not be able to trace you if you’ve moved address.
So, if you want to make sure you know where all your pensions are, the starting point is to:
- Think about all the jobs you’ve had and list all your previous employers
- Check which ones you’ve had any communication with about pensions
- Make sure they have your current home address
- If there are employers you can’t find any pension information for, you can:
- Contact their HR team for details
- Then contact the pension provider to find out your information
- If they no longer exist, or you can’t find their contact details, you can:
- Check on Companies House to find out whether the company has changed its name, been taken over or doesn’t exist anymore.
- You can also use the Government service to help you. Click Find pension contact details – GOV.UK to do this. It will help you find out the most recent information your previous employer provided to the Government.
- Once you know the name of the pension provider, you can contact them to get all the details of your benefits.
When you contact the providers, you’ll need your personal details, including your full name (and previous names if applicable), plus your National Insurance Number.