Majority of UK savers have at least one unclaimed pension

The majority (88 per cent) of UK savers with workplace pensions have at least one pension pot that remains unclaimed, research from Netwealth has revealed.

Amounting to an average of £28,000 per person, Netwealth warned that this is a "sizeable lost sum" that could otherwise be put to meaningful use when employees reach retirement amidst a backdrop of high inflation and living cost increases.

The research also found that over two fifths (42 per cent) of savers said that between 2-5 of their various pots are now stranded, which the firm highlighted as evidence of the challenge of overseeing multiple pensions.

This was particularly true for female respondents, with half (50 per cent) of women who confirmed a pension pot remains unclaimed stating that they do not have sight of or access to up to five company pensions accrued throughout their careers.

The firm warned that savers with legacy pots lying dormant are also at risk of not having the full financial potential of these assets realised over time, noting that accounts sitting with providers charging high management fees will unnecessarily erode the value of these savings.

Commenting on the findings, Netwealth CEO and founder, Charlotte Ransom, said: “It is understandable that in the current climate of market volatility and the cost-of-living crisis, there is a growing fear among investors that their savings won’t go far enough in later life, especially with average lifetimes extending, requiring more substantial retirement savings.

“Now more than ever, it is vital that consumers track down any stranded pensions that they have worked hard to earn, and that they act to recover them sooner rather than later to regain control over these important pools of value.

“Savers need to be protecting and fully maximising the value of their retirement savings, ensuring their assets are working as hard as they could be when it comes to delivering financial returns.

“It is very common to have several pools of retirement assets during our lifetime, and it is often difficult to successfully and actively track all of them, especially if they are sitting with multiple providers over a long period of time.

“The high number of stranded assets is clearly concerning, obstructing consumers from having a holistic view across all of their wealth in aggregate in order to be able to plan forward with confidence and identify the funds needed for key milestones.

“We can all do more to support consumers on their retirement planning journey and – once stranded assets are found - the full benefits of using financial planning tools such as MyNetwealth can be game-changing.

“For those who then decide they would like to speak to an adviser to discuss their arrangements, they can choose between a financial planning guidance session or full-blown regulatory advice.”

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