Early access to pensions ruled out

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The Independent Online

People will not be allowed to dip into their pensions before they reach retirement age, the Government announced yesterday.

The Treasury said allowing people early access to some of the money they had set aside would not encourage workers to save more, while it was also unlikely to provide significant help to people facing financial difficulties.

It added that the extensive pensions reforms that were already planned, including auto-enrolment, should be implemented before the Government considered any other changes.

Instead, workers will continue to be allowed access to money they have saved in a pension scheme only from the age of 55 at the earliest, except for in cases of serious ill-health and other limited circumstances.