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Annuitants told to reveal their illnesses

Annuitants told to reveal their illnesses

Category: Pensions

Updated: 14/05/2009
First Published: 14/05/2009

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.
Pensioners are missing out on substantial sums in pension benefits because they do not disclose their health conditions to financial advisers.

The warning comes after research from Rockingham Retirement revealed that up to 70% of people applying for an annuity are unaware they can improve their chances of getting a higher income by revealing medical conditions they suffer from.

With incidents of diabetes and high blood pressure on the rise, more pensioners should be able to buy an impaired annuity.

Meanwhile, smokers often do not realise that they could significantly increase their retirement income through an enhanced annuity.

In general, the more serious the condition, the more money the applicant should get.

For example, those suffering from non-insulin dependent diabetes and occasional angina - two very common conditions suffered by those in their mid-60s - could boost pension income by more than £2,000 a year with an impaired product.

"The rates payable do depend on the actual illness and the severity of the condition, but if you don't ask you don't get," said Steve Hunt, managing director at the retirement income specialist.

"These increased rates are applicable because of a shorter life expectancy, and the fact that any annuity payments are anticipated to be payable for a lesser period of time. It makes sense. What does not make sense is that so many people are in the dark about the fact that they can do so much better by shopping around for the best deal."

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