Your pension is a valuable asset – don’t leave work without it

Friday, February 29 2008: The Pensions Board today reminded employees, and those soon to be seeking employment, not to forget the importance of a pension.

Speaking at FÁS Opportunities 2008, the annual event focused on career, further education and skills-building, The Pensions Board highlighted that existing employees, but also those who are changing careers or re-skilling, must be always mindful of the importance of maintaining a pension.

“When people come to decide on a career and where or who they want to work for, a range of criteria are weighed up. The Pensions Board would urge people, to put a pension in the mix of the criteria when making career decisions, as it is vital for their financial future in retirement, said David Malone, Head of Information Services.”

Your pension is a valuable asset. It is so important that employees understand their entitlements and ask their employer and future employers about a pension. This is the case regardless of the stage an individual is at in their career. The cyclical nature of industry and life means many people are changing jobs and professions more regularly now.

Once people have all the information they need about pensions they should visit the online pensions calculator at www.pensionsboard.ie to work out as a guide how much you should be contributing to your pension. The calculator allows you to estimate the amount of money you would need to contribute to your pension to end up with the level of pension you expect in retirement. It will also work out the tax reliefs you get in relation to your contributions based on your age and current salary.


ENDS

Media queries:

David Malone
Head of Information services
The Pensions Board
Tel: (01) 6131900

Maura Howe
Project Manager – National Pensions Action Campaign
The Pensions Board
Tel: (01) 613 1900

Jackie Gallagher
Q4 Public Relations
Tel: (01) 4751444 / (087) 2371838


Notes to editors:

Starting a new job – ask about your pension

  • By law your employer must provide you with some form of access to a pension, whether you are in full-time, part-time, temporary, contract or casual employment.
  • You are legally entitled to information about your employer’s pension scheme or your PRSA, thanks to the Pensions Act.
  • You can save for retirement even if you are not working through a PRSA.


The facts

  • Only 61.8 % of the adult Irish workforce over 30 years of age
  • Only 58.3% of men in the Irish workforce
  • Only 50.6% of women in the Irish workforce
  • Less than 25% of those working in the agricultural industries including farming
  • working seasonal & part-time
  • working in the catering & tourism industries

    ….…have private pensions (Source: CSO survey Dec 2006)

Employers play your part - A good deal for YOUR company

A good pension scheme has been long recognised as a very valuable asset for both the company and its employees.

There is a stronger commitment from employees to participate in pension schemes where the employer makes a contribution.

Your company benefits from having:

  • a reputation and respect as a good employer.
  • a workforce that feels valued and important
  • increased loyalty and commitment from staff
  • an enhanced staff recruitment, reward and retention package

Choosing your pension option

You can increase your income in retirement by using:

  • A company pension plan – set up by an employer for its employees,
  • A personal pension, such as

- A retirement annuity contract (RAC) or
- A PRSA

These can be obtained from financial companies such as insurance companies, banks, building societies and financial advisors.

All of these options allow for tax relief on contributions, the tax free roll-up of investment and a tax-free lump sum at retirement. They are therefore a very efficient way of saving for your retirement.

The right choice for you will depend on your personal circumstances.

You will need to ask yourself a number of questions such as:

  1. Can I join a company pension plan?
  2. Will my employer help fund my pension?
  3. How much can I afford to save?
  4. How much extra income do I need in retirement?

For more information see The Pensions Board booklet, 'What are my pension options'

About The Pensions Board
The Pensions Board is the statutory body set up to regulate occupational pension schemes and PRSAs and to advise the Minister for Social and Family Affairs, and through him, the Government, on overall pension policy development.

Public Information
The information unit at The Pensions Board provides a wide range of pension information booklets free of charge and can be reached at the LoCall number 1890 656565 and on www.pensionsboard.ie.