What is it?

A stakeholder pension is a type of low-charge pension. You can buy a stakeholder pension from a commercial financial services company, such as a bank, insurance company or building society.
Stakeholder pensions must satisfy a number of minimum government standards to ensure that they offer value for money and flexibility. These standards include:

  • management charges in each year must not amount to more than the charge cap as set down by law – for people who join a stakeholder pension scheme on or after 6 April 2005 the cap is an annual management charge of 1.5% for the first 10 years, which will reduce to 1% from then onwards if these members remain in the scheme
  • the stakeholder pension contract must not have charges for members transferring into or out of the stakeholder pension scheme
  • all stakeholder pensions schemes must accept contributions of 20 or more, though some may accept lower payments
  • stakeholder pension schemes must be run in the interest of their members, and will either have trustees or they will be run by a scheme manager

Note: The annual charge for members who purchased their stakeholder pension scheme before 6 April 2005 will remain at 1% for as long as they remain in the scheme. However, if such members move to another stakeholder pension scheme on or after 6 April 2005, the new charge cap of 1.5% will apply for the first ten years of membership of that new scheme.
For individuals You can read or print a copy of our guide to stakeholder pensions, called
Stakeholder pensions - Your Guide (PM8) from the resource centre on The Pension Service website.
You can also call our Pensions Info-Line on: 0845 7 31 32 33 or
text phone: 0845 604 0210. Calls are charged at local rates and the line is open 24 hours a day. Or, you can write to us at:
Pension Guide
You can also visit the
Financial Services Authority website for information on a range of personal finance products and issues. There is also a section on pensions that includes stakeholder pensions.
You can also contact the helpline, run by the “The Pensions Advisory Service” and funded by the Department for Work and Pensions and the Financial Services Authority.
For employers Many employers are required by law to offer their employees access to a stakeholder pension scheme. Some employers however will be exempt. To find out how you are affected, see our guide,
Stakeholder pensions - a guide for employers. You can order a copy from the Inland Revenue's Employer's Order line on: 0845 7646 646. The order line is open Monday to Friday, 8.00am - 8.00pm, and Saturday, 10.00am to 1.00pm.
You may also find the following useful:

Helpline Numbers

If you have a query relating to:

  • Stakeholder pension scheme registration - contact the Pensions Regulator on: 0870 2433 123, Monday to Friday from 8.30am to 5.30pm
  • Tax approval and contracting out - contact the Inland Revenue Pensions Schemes Office on: 0115  9741 777
  • Tax repayments - contact the Financial Intermediaries and Claims Office (FICO) on: 0151 4726 109
  • DWP legal requirements - call the Inland Revenue Stakeholder Pension Scheme Provider's Helpline on: 0845 9150 150, Monday to Friday from 8.00am to 5.00pm
  • The rules for authorising stakeholder pension scheme managers, or the marketing or promotion of any stakeholder scheme - contact the Financial Services Authority on: 020 7676 0082, Monday to Friday from 9.00am to 5.00pm
  • Stakeholder pensions (general enquiries), call the helpline on: 0845 601 2923, Monday to Friday, from 9.00am to 5.00pm; the helpline is run by The Pensions Advisory Service and is funded by the Department for Work and Pensions and the Financial Services Authority, and deals with consumer enquiries about stakeholder, occupational and personal pensions

Remember that this website is only a general guide to benefits and schemes, and is not a full and authoritative statement of the law.

Contact us for more information.
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Tel: 01764 652 225
Fax: 01764 654 433

Disclaimer - No investment decision

No investment decision should be taken based on the content of this site.  Always take full individual advice first.  The regulations governing tax rates and investments may change in the future.

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