Supporting you to make the right decision for you

Whether you’re getting ready to take your pension savings, or only just starting to think about retirement, you have more control over your savings in your RSA pension schemes than you might think.

With the new pension flexibilities, you can make your money work for your personal situation and your plans. You have a series of choices to make and this website can help you think about what might be right for you.

Watch the explainer video

Get a quick overview of all of your available options. Our video will help you explore your options with confidence.

Step 1. Consider your priorities

What’s your retirement dream?

Traveling to places you’ve never seen? Maybe starting your own business? It’s important to make sure you take your retirement savings in the best way for you.

Get inspired with our example members.

People like me

A pile of polaroid images

Step 2. Explore your options

Here are your options at a glance

Take your benefits from the RSA pension schemes

At a glance

  • A guaranteed income for life for you and your spouse
  • Yearly increases to protect against the effect of inflation
  • Optional tax-free cash of up to 25% of your total pension value.

Read more…

By taking your benefits from the RSA pension schemes, you’ll receive a guaranteed income for the rest of your life. Your pension may increase each year, in line with the Scheme Rules, to provide some protection against the effects of inflation. You also have the option to exchange part of your pension for a tax-free cash lump sum – up to 25% of the total value of your pension. If you have a spouse/civil partner/qualifying dependant when you die, they’ll receive a pension for the rest of their life, in line with the Scheme Rules. Also, if you die less than 5 years after taking your pension, a lump sum will be paid to your dependants. This would be the same value as the remaining pension payments that you would have received in the first five years. Learn more by reading our factsheet.

Learn more by reading our factsheet

Or, transfer your benefits away from the Scheme

At a glance

  • A pot of cash to secure a retirement income outside of the RSA pension schemes, which can be tailored to your needs
  • Option to increase the cash you receive now.

Read more…

To learn more about what it means to transfer your benefits out of the Scheme and why some people choose this option, watch our 4-minute explainer video by scrolling up or by clicking/tapping here.

If you transfer your benefits you have three choices

You can take your benefits all as cash, a bit at a time, as a guaranteed regular income – or mix and match. You’ll find an estimate of your current transfer value in the retirement quotation statement you recently received from RSA. Once you’ve read through these details, type in your numbers into the illustrator tool to see what these different choices could mean for you.

Transfer out and buy a regular income for life (an annuity)

At a glance

  • Optional tax-free cash lump sum of up to 25% of your transfer value
  • Choose the level of benefits and cover you need to match your priorities
  • You’ll need to shop around to get the best deal.

Read more…

By buying an annuity, you’re able to tailor a regular, guaranteed retirement income to your suit your circumstances.

For example, you’ll be able to decide whether you want to include an income for your spouse or civil partner after you die and whether you want your income to increase over time or remain level. You may also be able to get a higher income if you are in poor health or are a smoker.

Learn more by reading our factsheet

Transfer out and withdraw cash as and when you need it (drawdown)

At a glance

  • Optional tax-free cash lump sum of up to 25% of your transfer value
  • All savings go to a spouse or dependant on death before age 75
  • You’ll need to make sure your money lasts as long as you need it to.

Read more…

By investing your pension savings into a Drawdown arrangement you’ll have the flexibility to withdraw taxable cash as and when you need it throughout retirement.

However, you’ll be responsible for managing your savings, including choosing which funds to invest in.

Learn more by reading our factsheet

Transfer out and take a single cash lump sum

At a glance

  • Take all of your benefits as a cash lump sum
  • You’ll be taxed on 75% of the amount you take, possibly at a higher level than you’re used to
  • No guaranteed income for your retirement.

Read more…

By taking your pension savings as cash you’ll be taking all of your pension savings at one time as a single lump sum.

Up to 25% of your lump sum may be paid tax free, but you’ll pay tax on the remainder – potentially pushing you into a higher tax bracket as your income is not spread out.

You will be responsible for making your money last.

Learn more by reading our factsheet

Which option is right for you? – Compare your options

Mix-and-match your options

Should you wish to, you can mix-and-match from the options above.

For example you can take some cash up front, buy an income for life to cover the basics and draw down the rest. It’s entirely your choice.

You should to speak to a Financial Advisor if you are considering this.

Compare options side-by-side

Please click or tap the image below.

Side by side comparison of DB options

Play with the Illustrator

Illustrator image

The illustrator is for deferred members approaching retirement and who are eligible for a retirement quote. Once you’ve got that quote, you can compare your Scheme Pension against taking a transfer and using the flexible retirement options instead.

Up to 25% of your lump sum may be paid tax free, but you’ll pay tax on the remainder – potentially pushing you into a higher tax bracket as your income is not spread out.

Compare your options with the Illustrator tool.

Step 3. Make your decision

This is a big decision. It’s important to have all the information you need to make it.

Helping you make a decision

Once you have an idea of which of the available options you think may work best for you, we strongly recommend that you get guidance and/or advice if you’re thinking about transferring your pension. In fact, if your transfer value is £30,000 or larger, you have to take advice to transfer out of the Scheme.


While the decision on whether to take financial advice is a personal one, there are some circumstances in particular where taking advice, instead of, or as well as, guidance, may be appropriate.

Examples of such circumstances include:

  • You have a large pension account
  • You expect to be affected by the Lifetime Allowance (pension savings above this amount incur additional tax charges). This is currently £1.055m for the 2019/20 tax year
  • You have complex income requirements in retirement
  • You currently live overseas or you are planning to move abroad
  • You have significant other assets outside of your pension arrangement (excluding your own home)
  • You are in serious ill-health
  • You have complex debts to manage.

You can find a financial adviser by visiting the Pensions and Money Service’s page on choosing a financial adviser.


The Government’s Money and Pension Service is available to provide you guidance. There is a lot of information available on their website. Part of what they offer is the Pensions Advisory Service (TPAS) and you can talk to them:

  • By telephone: 0800 011 3797 (from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday)
  • On Webchat with the Pensions Advisory Service (available 9am to 6:20pm, Monday to Friday with an extended Tuesday evening session from 7pm to 9pm.

Made a decision?

If you’re ready to do something and choose from one of the available options, you can send the administrator an email by using the buttons below. The email will be pre-populated with most of the information you need, you will just need to review it, add some of your personal information and send it to them.

Receive your pension from the RSA pension schemes

You can find details on how to take your pension in your Retirement Pack. Fill out all of the relevant forms you’ll find in your pack and return them to us with any additional documents we need - and we’ll set this up for you.

Please pay particular attention to Form 1 – Your retirement decision where you need to choose either Option 1 – Cash + reduced pension or Option 2 – Full pension.

Or, transfer your pension away from the RSA pension schemes

If you want to transfer out of the Scheme please complete the relevant forms in the Transfer Section of your Retirement Pack, or the forms in your Transfer Pack if received separately, and return to us with the additional documentation we need and we will be able to progress your transfer.

Please pay particular attention to Form 1 – Your retirement decision where you need to choose Option 3 – Transfer.

Not ready yet?

No worries, you don’t have to do anything if you do not want to. These options will be available in the future for when you are ready to start receiving your RSA pension schemes benefits.

Side by side comparison of DB options