Being offered the chance to transfer a defined benefit (DB) pension into a defined contribution (DC) scheme means making a big decision - one not to be taken lightly. What’s more, if you decide to transfer, there’s no going back. This means it’s incredibly important that you fully understand the implications of your final decision, whether it is to stay in your DB scheme or to transfer out. You may be offered a financial incentive to transfer out. It is important to carefully evaluate this incentive before you transfer out.
Years ago, people who worked for big firms built up a company pension based on how long they had worked for the firm and how much they earned. In these much simpler days, beyond a certain point, people didn’t have to think much about their pensions. The pension they would receive was guaranteed by the rules of the pension scheme and was set in stone from the moment they retired. These are known as defined benefit pension (DB) schemes.