Social activist Anna Hazare will soon join the ongoing relay hunger strike at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi in support of ‘One Rank One Pension’, a group of protesting ex-servicemen said on Wednesday. If you’re a US citizen with a UK pension, you ought to consider the transfer of your UK pension to USA. Moving your UK pension to the US via a QROPS or SIPP might be an honest option. Click here to read transfer UK pension to USA rules. Pensions are often perceived as being complicated and hard work and as a result, are frequently neglected. This becomes increasingly apparent amongst those who have left the UK to live abroad as this money is often simply forgotten about until retirement draws closer. Even if you don’t know anything about pensions and are not currently residing in the UK, if you have a UK occupational or personal pension, a UK pension transfer into a UK SIPP or QROPS does not have to be difficult. It can also offer some important benefits depending on what your personal circumstances are. QROPS (Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes) were introduced by the British Government in a bid to simplify the process of expatriate retirement. In brief terms, it enables those with UK pensions who currently live abroad to take their pensions with them (where permitted and available in the relevant country). QROPS can also offer pension holders increased flexibility and importantly, also more control. If you are an expatriate and have a number of different UK pensions, a UK pension transfer into a SIPP or QROPS can make managing your pension much simpler. If you have more than one UK pension, chances are that you are paying more than one set of fees and are trying to keep track of the performance of each individual plan. However, by consolidating your pensions into one place, it’s much easier to view your holdings and develop an investment strategy in line with your retirement plans and objectives. While the value of investments can fall as well as rise, a UK pension transfer into a SIPP or QROPS does mean that there are no caps on the growth of your pension. Additionally to this, individuals are safe in the knowledge that their former employer or pension plan administrator cannot reduce their benefits if their plan faces a deficit.
Hazare has already expressed his support to the long-pending OROP scheme, saying it is a “fair demand”. “Anna Hazare has written to Prime Minister and others. He has also assured that he will be joining the relay hunger strike on Jantar Mantar shortly,” Col (Retd) Anil Kaul, media advisor to United Front of Ex-Servicemen (UFESM) said.
Peeved at not being able to meet Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar this week, he said that UFESM has decided not to request for meeting with anyone. “The onus of any further meeting lies with the establishment,” he said.
The Modi government has said it is committed to OROP, a key promise made during the Lok Sabha polls. It has, however, not implemented it till now. Also, there has been no official word on why the scheme is getting delayed.
Close to 22 lakh ex-servicemen and over six lakh war widows stand to be immediate beneficiaries of the scheme, which envisages a uniform pension for the defence personnel who retire in the same rank with the same length of service, irrespective of their date of retirement. Currently, the pension for retired personnel is based on the Pay Commission recommendations of the time when he or she retired. Therefore, a Major General who retired in 1996 draws a lower pension than a Lieutenant Colonel who retired after 1996.