Pension plans or retirement plans are a type of investment plan, which helps you to accumulate a part of your savings over a long-term period so that you can have a secured financial future. Pension Plan helps you to deal with the uncertainties post-retirement and ensures a steady flow of income after retirement. Even if a person has a good amount of savings, a pension plan is nevertheless crucial.
Pension plans also known as retirement plans are investment plans that let you allocate a part of your savings to accumulate over a period of time and provide you with steady income after retirement.
Savings get exhausted very fast and are sometimes used in emergencies, thus it is very important to choose the best pension scheme so that you secure your cash flow for meeting basic daily needs post-retirement. When you continuously invest in a pension plan, the amount multiplies due to the benefit of the power of compounding, which makes a lot of difference to your final savings corpus. By choosing the right retirement plan, you can plan for retirement in a phased manner. So it is advisable to choose the best pension plan that can act as a savior in your golden years.
What are Retirement Plans?
Retirement plans or pension plans are specifically designed investment plan, which helps you to create a financial cushion in a long-term so that you can ensure to have a financially sound future after retirement. In a retirement plan, the insured needs to contribute a specific amount on a regular basis until the time of retirement. The accumulated amount is given back to the insured as pension or annuity at regular intervals of time. The pension plans not only secures the financial future of the individual after retirement but also help an individual to deal with the eventualities post-retirement.
Best Pension Plans in India
Here are the Best Pension Plans in India 2020:
||Annual Premium Amount
|HDFC Life Click 2 Retire
||18 years - 65 years
||10 or 15 - 35 years
||Rs.24, 000/- minimum
|Edelweiss Tokio Life -Wealth Ultima
||With Little Champ Benefits -Life Insured - 0- the 17-year policyholder - 18 - 55 years without Little Champ Benefits -Life Insured - 0 - 60 years
||18 - 100 years
||Minimum: 10 years Maximum: For 5 - 6 PPT: 70 years For 7PPT and above: 100 years minus age of the policyholder at entry
||Different Sum Assured according to Age
|Bajaj Life-Long Goal Pension Scheme
||0 years (Life Assured)18 years (Policyholder) - 65 years (Life Assured) and No Limit (Policyholder)
||99 - Entry age of the Life Assured
||Rs.60, 000/ minimum
|Max Life Online Savings Plan -
||50 years - 75 years
|Future Generali - Big Dreams Pension Scheme
||18 years - 75 years
||5 years - 20 years
||Rs.60, 000 minimum
||Regular Pay - 10X Annualize PremiumLimited Pay - 10X Annualize PremiumSingle Pay - 1.25X Single Premium
|HDFC Life Pension Super Plus
||35 years - 65 years
||55 years - 75 years
||10 years - 20 years
||Subject to underwriting
|HDFC Life Personal Pension Plus
||18 years -65 years
||55 years (minimum,75 years (maximum)
||10 years( minimum),40 years(maximum)
||Equal to the policy term
||Rs. 2,04,841 (minimum); Depends on term, age and premium (maximum)
|Canara HSBC Invest 4G Whole Life
||18 years - 55 years
||Age<45 years - 10X Annualize Premium0.5*Term*Annualize PremiumAge >=45 years - 10X Annualize Premium0.25*Term*Annualize Premium
|LIC New Jeevan Akshay
||30 years - 85 years
||Depends on then try age and purchase price
|ICICI Pru Easy Retire Pension Scheme
||35 years - 70 years
||45 years - 80 years
||10 years - 30 years
||Rs.48, 000/- minimum
Types of Pension Plans in India
To cater to the requirement of the insurance seekers, there is a wide range of Pension Plans available in the market. These plans have multiple classifications, based on the plan structure and benefits. These pension plans can be further divided into 8 categories:
- Deferred Annuity
- Immediate Annuity
- Annuity Certain
- With Cover and Without Cover Pension Plans
- Guaranteed Period Annuity
- Life Annuity
- National Pension Scheme(NPS)
- Pension Funds
- Whole Life ULIPs
Let’s explore these pension funds in detail:
A deferred Pension Scheme allows you to accumulate a corpus through regular premium or single premium payment over a policy term. After the completion of the policy tenure, the pension is provided to the insured. The deferred annuity plan offers various different benefits to the insured person. Moreover, it also offers the benefit of a tax exemption that is associated with the pension scheme. In a deferred pension plan, only 1/3rd of the corpus is tax-free on withdrawal, whereas the 2/3rd of the corpus is taxable. The amount invested in a deferred pension plan is locked and cannot be withdrawn for any emergency.
A deferred pension scheme can be bought by paying one-time payment as well as paying regular premium payments. Therefore, these pension schemes are suitable for all types of investors, be it those who want to invest systematically and those who have a chunk of money to invest at one go.
Under an immediate annuity scheme, the pension is provided immediately. The policyholder has to pay a lump-sum amount and pension will be provided instantly, based on the lump-sum amount paid by the policyholder. Under the immediate annuity pension scheme, the insured can choose from the range of annuity options. Moreover, the premiums paid are tax-exempted as per Income Tax Act, 1961. In an immediate annuity retirement plan, the nominee of the policy is entitled to receive the money in case of demise of the insured person during the tenure of the policy.
With Cover and Without Cover Pension Plans
With cover pension plans have life cover component in the plan. Upon the death of the policyholder, a lump sum amount is paid to the beneficiary of the policy. However, the cover amount is not very high since a large part of the premium is paid towards growing the corpus rather than covering for life risk.
Under without cover pension plan, no life cover is offered to the insured person. In the event of unfortunate death of the insured person, the nominee will get the corpus (till the date of the death). Currently, deferred pension plans come with the option of life cover, whereas immediate annuity plans do not offer the option of life cover.
Under this pension plan option, the annuity is paid to the annuitant for a specific number of years. The annuitant can choose the period and if they pass away before receiving all complete payment, the annuity will be paid to the beneficiary of the policy.
Guaranteed Period Annuity
Under guaranteed period annuity plan, the annuity is provided to the policyholder for certain periods like 5years, 10years, 15 years or 20 years, whether or not the insured survives that duration.
Under the life annuity plan, the pension amount will be paid to the annuitant until death. After choosing the option of ‘with spouse’, the amount of pension will be given to the spouse of the policyholder, in case of the death of the policyholder.
National Pension Scheme (NPS)
New Pension Scheme was introduced by the government of India in order to secure the financial future of the individual after retirement. The policyholder can put savings in the New Pension Scheme. As per the preference of an individual, the money invested in the National Pension Scheme is put in equity and debt funds in order to generate returns on investment. The policyholder can withdraw 60% of the amount at retirement and rest 40% of the amount is used to purchase the annuity. The maturity proceeds are not tax-free.
The pension fund is a type of pension scheme that remains in force for a long period of time. This pension plan offers a comparatively better return upon maturity. The Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA), the government body has allowed 6 companies as fund managers to manage Pension Funds.
Whole Life ULIPs
Under this option of the pension plan, the money stays invested for the whole life of the insured and upon retirement, he/she can make partial withdrawals and get tax free income. Additional withdrawals are allowed whenever needed or whenever necessary.
Comparison between Pension Plans
For the better understanding of our readers, here we have shown a tabular comparison of different pension schemes in India.
||New Age Retirement Products (Whole Life ULIP)
||Regular Retirement Product
||National Pension Scheme
||Public Provident Fund
|100% tax-free income on Retirement for Life
|Flexibility to withdraw 100% Fund Value
||Yes, withdraw up to 100% of Fund Value anytime after 5 years
||No, withdraw up to 33% of Fund Value upon Retirement
||No, partially withdraw up to 25% of Fund Value after 10 years
||No, partially withdraw up to 50% of Fund Value
|Tax-free Fund Value withdraw
||Yes, withdraw 100% of Fund Value tax-free
||No, withdraw up to 33% of Fund Value tax-free upon retirement
||No, withdraw up to 60% of Fund Value tax-free upon retirement
||Yes, withdraw 100% of Fund Value tax-free
|Flexibility to increase, decrease income
|Choice of multiple investment strategies to maximize the growth of fund value
|Tax exemption on Amount Invested
||Sec 80 upto 1.5 Lacs
||Sec 80 upto 1.5 Lacs
||Sec 80 CCD (1B) upto 50K & Sec 80 upto 1.5 Lacs
||Sec 80C uptp 1.5 Lacs
Features and Benefits of Retirement Pension Plans
In today’s day and age, people start planning for the retirement life at an early stage so that at the later stage they do not have to depend on others to make their ends meet.
In case you want to opt for a Pension Plan, ensure that the plan you choose has the following features:
The annuity is the most distinctive feature of a pension plan and generally comes in two types, immediate annuity and deferred annuity. As the name suggests, immediate annuity starts immediately. The insurance company pays the pension plan annuity amount right after receiving the lump sum premium. Immediate annuity pension fund comes with the option of single premium payment so that the insurance company can use the amount invested by the policyholder to build up a corpus for him or her.
The deferred annuity pension plan starts paying a certain sum after a few years. The insurance companies offer a diverse range of plan options for different terms that allow the policyholder to choose the period for which they want to receive the annuity.
If you are looking forward to retirement planning, then, zero in on the best pension plan in India by keeping in mind the annuity offered by the pension scheme and the premium charged by the policy.
The sum assured is a pre-defined amount offered to the insured during the tenure of the policy. The sum assured amount is generally offered as death or maturity benefit under with cover pension plan. The sum assured amount is determined by the insurance companies in a different way. Under some retirement plans, the sum assured amount is determined as 10 times of the annual premium paid, while others may offer a sum assured that equals the fund value of the policy opted by the individual. In case, there is no sum assured, then the plan is more in the nature of a pure pension plan rather than an insurance plan with retirement benefits.
Age is the age when the investors begin to receive the monthly pension. For example, most of the pension plans keep their minimum vesting age at 45 or 50 years. The vesting age in a pension scheme is flexible up to the age of 70 years. However, some of the insurance companies allow the vesting age to be up to 90 years of age.
The investors can either choose to pay the premium at one go as lump-sum investment or in periodic intervals. The premium invested is simultaneously accumulated over a long-term period in order to create a financial cushion for the future. The accumulation period in a retirement scheme is described as the time from which you start investing until the time you invest. For instance, if you start investing at the age of 30 years and you continue to invest until you turn 60, then the accumulation period of the pension plan will be 30 years. Your pension for the chosen period majorly comes from this corpus.
The payment period, as the name suggests, refers to the period during which the investor starts receiving the payments post-retirement. For instance, if an individual receives a pension from the age of 60 years -75 years, then the payment period of the pension plan will be 15 years. In most of the pension plan, the accumulation phase is kept separate from the payment period. However, some retirement schemes offer the option of partial or full withdrawal during the accumulation period as well.
The surrender value of pension plans is the amount the insurance company will pay the individual if they surrender the plan before its maturity if they have paid the premium for the minimum period. When an insured surrenders their pension plan, they lose all benefits offered by the plan, including the life cover, if any.
Minimum Guarantee of Pension Plans
Every pension plan must have a minimum guarantee. Every premium paid towards the insurance benefit as well as the maturity benefit must-have ‘on zero returns’, as instructed by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India. This should not be less than one percent of the premiums paid over the years. Though the minimum guarantee is applicable on all variable insurance plans, most companies offer various types of Pension Plans that may offer better returns than the guaranteed plans. This, of course, varies from plan to plan and you should make sure that you pick ones that offer this best return. The minimum guarantee of pension plans provides a guaranteed amount that the policyholder will definitely receive at the end of the policy period.
Factors to Consider While Buying Pension Plans
Here are different factors that should be considered while purchasing a Pension Plan:
- Monthly Expenses: While planning for retirement, it is very important to keep in mind the monthly expenses. After retirement, the regular source of income is cut-off. Thus, in order to keep up with the regular monthly expenses of the family, it important to create a financial corpus big enough to take care of all these expenses. Apart from the monthly expenses, it is important to allocate ample fund for the post-retirement unexpected financial emergencies.
- Inflation: While purchasing a Pension Plan, it important to keep in mind the growing inflation rate and plan accordingly that how much corpus will be sufficient enough to maintain a financially secured lifestyle after retirement.
- Life Expectancy: There is no way to correctly predict how long an individual will live. Thus, while purchasing the best pension plans your retirement fund should be sufficient enough to support your financial needs during the old age.
- Medical Expenses: Young people often tend to ignore the future medical expenses. However, when one gets old, they may have to spend a bomb on medical check-ups and treatments. Thus, it is very important that your Pension Plan should provide you with an adequate fund to deal with any type of medical emergencies.
- Assets and Loans: Another important thing that you should consider while purchasing the best Pension Plans is your outstanding loans and current assets. In case you have any outstanding loans, then repay off these loan(s) on time. If you fail to repay the loan(s) on time then it can take away a chunk of the annuity income.
- Understand Your Financial Needs: It is crucial that you understand how much you need to sustain yourself and your dependents after your retirement.
- Do Some Research: Read through the pension plan details in depth to understand what you are signing up for. The pension details in the policies will offer information on the periodicity of your income, how much is guaranteed, how much is dependent on market performance etc.
- Understand the Different Products: There are various retirement plans available in the market. Shortlist the ones that will fulfill your financial expectations.
- Know About other Retirement Planning Options: Do not stick to a Retirement Planning solution just because someone says so. One product that suits your friend may not suit you. Look up the provident funds, or pension funds offered by the asset management companies and those offered by the insurance companies to get what you need.
Do not look at Only the Tax Benefits: Consider tax benefit as a secondary benefit instead of a primary benefit. If you opt for a retirement plan, considering only the tax benefits, you might not be able to build up the corpus you need for your retirement. So, do your retirement planning calculations and choose a plan accordingly.
What is Retirement Planning?
Retirement Planning can be described as the process to plan the long-term and short-term financial goals and the ways to accomplish these goals. Retirement Planning involves identifying different income sources, analyzing the financial objectives, estimating the future expenses, opting for savings program and managing risk and assets.
Planning for retirement is rather a life-long process. Even though, one can start their retirement at any age but it works best, when an individual includes this factor into their financial planning from the starting. Planning for retirement from an early stage of life is the best way to ensure a secured, safe and fun retirement.
Let’s take a look at the key take away of retirement planning.
- Retirement planning can be described as the financial planning of investment, savings and final distribution of money in order to sustain one’s self at the time of retirement.
- There are various popular investment options, which allow the individuals to accumulate fund with the advantage of tax benefit.
- While planning for retirement it is important to consider factors like future liabilities, expenses and life expectancy along with asset and income.
- The early one starts planning for retirement the better fund they can accumulate over a long period of time in order to have a secured life after retirement.
Retirement Planning Goals
It is important to note that planning for retirement starts way before an individual gets retired—the sooner the better. Even though, the amount of money one requires to retire comfortably is entirely personalized, but there are various rules of thumb that can provide an idea of how much to save.
Here we have taken an example in order to help you understand how much retirement corpus one needs at the time of retirement.
Mr. Kumar is 42 years old married man and is currently working in a private company in a position of senior product manager. His wife is only member of the family who is dependent on him. Mr. kumar wants to retire at the age of 60.
He currently earns Rs.80,000 per month, while his monthly expense is Rs.52,000 including the insurance premium and mutual fund investments. He is adequately insured and has created an emergency fund of 6 months. Considering the above mentioned information, let’s take a look at how much retirement corpus he needs during retirement.
|Current Monthly House Hold Expenses
|Post Retirement Monthly Current Expenses
|Number of years left for retirement
|Estimated Post Retirement Expenses
|Retirement Corpus Required
In order to maintain the same life-style after retirement, Mr.Kumar will require approximately Rs.2.12 crore in order to live a secured life after retirement.
Advantages of Retirement Plans in India
If you are trying to find the best pension plan in India, it is very important to understand the advantages of retirement planning and the benefits offered by various pension schemes in India. Each pension scheme in India comes with its own specific retirement benefits, further here we have mentioned some of the advantages offered by the pension scheme in India.
Savings for a Longer Term
Irrespective of the premium payment mode selected by you, which can be multiple small payouts or a lump sum payment, one thing that you assure with a retirement plan is savings for the long term. Retirement plans India mainly focuses on creating the annuity that can further invest in generating a steady flow of cash for your post-retirement years.
Regular Income after Retirement
The pension scheme in India offers a guaranteed income that helps the policyholder to meet their day-to-day expenses. Your current income and future inflation should lay a foundation of your retirement planning as it will help you to compute the money you’ll need post-retirement. Some of the insurance plans offer income that ensures that the policyholder does not have to worry about the future. Since these life-income plans offer better returns, it is a smart way to walk down the lane of retirement planning.
The retirement planning solutions people invest in provides them with an insurance cover, to financially protect their family if the worst comes to pass. Most life insurance companies offer an insurance cover benefit under various retirement plans so that the spouse does not have to face any financial difficulty if the unfortunate happens.
No-Risk in Investment
The retirement plans in India protect the policyholder against any kind of investment risks. If your Pension Plan is offered by your employer, then also you need not worry. This is because, even if the downfall in the stock market, the company has to make up to recover the lost money. However, there will not be any negative effect on your retirement benefit. Moreover, even if your company goes bankrupt, nothing happens to your pension even then. This is because, the government entity- the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, takes care of your pension payouts.
Tax Benefits of Pension Plans
The investment you make in the Retirement Planning solutions will help you to save significantly on your tax. In fact, if you plan it well, enjoy the offered tax benefits. Checking the policy details will also allow you to understand if you can avail tax benefits under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act.
Money When You Need It
Some plans offer lump-sum payment that you can use to meet major expenses (if any). In the years leading up to retirement, an individual may need funds for various reasons such as buying a flat or paying for children’s wedding. Some pension plans offer to withdraw a large chunk of your corpus to meet financial emergencies. Checking the policy details for the various plans will help you in Retirement Planning, as you will be able to pick the ones that suit your future financial expectations.
Different Plans Caters to Different Individuals
While buying a retirement plan in India, you will get numerous options. These options will be according to the age of retirement and the inclusions that you may want. You can pay a lump sum of approximately Rs.5 Lakh in one go and immediately start getting annuity payment. Or you may go for a differed annuity policy to get more interest before the start of payout.
Option to Enhance the Protection
By opting for an add-on rider, you can enhance the coverage of your retirement plans in India. Some retirement plan riders worth considering are, disability due to an accident rider, critical illness rider etc.
You can choose ULIP
With retirement plans in India, you can go for the option of a Unit-Linked Insurance Plans. Under a ULIP, your money will be invested in equity and debt funds or safer government securities as per your preference. Based on the market returns, you can get a huge corpus at your retirement. It can help you to maintain your lifestyle without making any compromises.
Note- For detailed information of the pension plan, read the plan brochure. You can log on to PolicyBazaar.com, to compare the best retirement plan in India for you.
Why Do You Need to Start the Retirement Planning Today?
The early on you start planning for your retirement, the more wealth you can create over a long period of time in order to create a secured future after retirement Let’s take a look at the reason why you should start retirement planning today.
- With the help of the retirement plan in India, you will be able to take care of the financial needs of the family after retirement as it will provide you with a source of income post-retirement.
- The money saved for retirement can help you deal with any type of emergency situation, be it wealth wise or health-wise, in the future.
- One of the most important advantages of retirement planning is that you can live a stress-free retirement life after retirement as you will not have to be dependent on anyone.
- With proper retirement planning and by investing in the right pension plan, you can maintain a good lifestyle after retirement and can even fulfil your unfulfilled desires that you couldn’t early on in your life.
- With the help of pension funds in India, you can assure a guaranteed income after retirement as an annuity to take care of your monthly expenses.
Best Time to Invest in Retirement Plan
The early you plan your retirement by opting for retirement plans in India, the higher returns you will get from your policy. So, it is good to start investing as early as you get your first salary. However, initially, you can start with small amounts and gradually with an increase in your salary you can increase this contribution also.
Importance of Retirement Plan
A retirement plan is as important as a health insurance plan. Here are the reasons why:
You won’t be able to Work Always
There are some people who want to work until the last day of your life. Due to ageing, poor health condition will stop most of the people from working. In such case,, having a regular source of income works as a virtue. Retirement plans can provide a regular source of income even when you will not be able to work.
To Save for Medical Emergencies
The older you get, you become more prone to develop/ contract health issues. Ageing doesn’t only affect your health, it affects your pocket as well. After retirement, one of the most recurring expenses is medical expenses. If you don’t have a senior citizen plan, you have all the more reason to opt for a retirement plan.
A medical emergency may leave a big hole in your pocket especially post-retirement. Having a retirement plan can help you keep such financial crises at bay.
To Check -off Your Bucket List
From childhood to old age, you might have made so many compromises such as not pursuing your dreams, travel plans etc. However, if you have planned your retirement gracefully by opting for one of the best retirement plans in India, you can check off your bucket list items easily.
To Stay Financially Independent
By being financially independent, you will not become a burden for your children during your post-retirement life. This will not only give you mental peace, but it will also give your family (children) a sense of satisfaction that their parents are financially sound.
You Can Help your Family as Well
Another benefit of retiring gracefully with retirement plans is being able to help out your family in their bad time or when they need (if need be).
5 Tips for Retirement Planning
Various retirement plans in India ensures a safe and tension-free retirement. They are among the most popular choices for retirement planning. Since there are many different types of pension plans in India, it is important to analyze your financial needs before you decide to choose a retirement plan.
Let’s take a look at the top 5 tips of Retirement Planning:
- Save for Retirement Now- Many of us rely on personal savings as a retirement planning option. While the salaried individuals will get have pension income after retirement and the self-employed will have savings, opting for a pension plan early on in life always works as a lifesaver.
- Be Prepared for Future Financial Emergencies- Since most people have only one source of income, having a retirement corpus to fall back on during the golden phase of your life will be quiet comforting. The corpus ought to be adequate enough to take care of your future financial emergencies.
- Explore various insurance options- In case you have any dependents then life insurance serves as the primary option of income replacement for those who depend on you. In case you don’t have any dependents then you can invest your income in different investment instruments where it can multiply and you can receive a good return on your investment at a particular time period. Moreover, having an insurance policy at an early stage of life is much easy as the premium rates are relatively less and the policies offer higher coverage as compared to the policy you buy in the later stage of life.
- Diversify your Investments- Retirement Planning doesn’t have to be boring. Since investing only in retirement plans may not be enough to support your financial situation after retirement, you consider putting your money in different investment instruments for long term capital appreciation and return. Moreover, various investment plans also provide a tax advantage to individuals
- Think about Your Retirement Wants- much before you reach your old age and get retire start saving money according to your retirement needs. For example, as you age the medical expenses automatically increases so secure yourself and your family with proper health insurance so that in case of any critical illness you are covered entirely. Do give a thought on many other factors like which city you want to settle after retirement, a major investment that can take place after retirement etc.
Eligibility for Retirement Plans in India
The three main eligibility criteria for purchasing retirement plans in India are:
- Entry Age: You can purchase a Pension Plan only after you attain a certain age. There are different age brackets for different insurance plans, but generally, the minimum entry age for a Pension Plan is 18 years. However, there are some companies that have set the entry age for these plans as 30 years. In the same way, there is a maximum entry age for the pension fund. In most cases, it is around 70 years.
- Premium: There is a minimum premium payment that the policyholder has to pay for taking a Pension Plan. This is because the pension is received according to the premium paid by the policyholder.
- Vesting Age: This is the age at which the policyholder starts getting a pension. Generally, it is set at 40 years. It can go up to the limit provided by the insurance provider.
How to Calculate the Return of Pension Plans?
While it is important to strategically plan your retirement and generate a retirement corpus, an investor should opt for a retirement plan based on the offered returns.
Here is how you can calculate the return of pension plans:
With the help of the online pension calculator, you can easily calculate the return of pension plans. You will need to enter information such as your savings, your expenditure, your current financial liabilities, the total sum required and monthly expenses. Based on the information, the retirement plan returns can be calculated.
Pension Plans - Latest News 2018-19
In the latest budget released by the Indian Government, it announced the launch of term policies with zero GST, which will encourage people to buy term policies, and hence, eventually help the country to have a better GDP percentage for life insurance schemes. As annuity schemes in India have always been taxable, they have always been considered as an unattractive investment option. The government has thus, made a big move to make term insurance plans available at zero GST or at a minimum rate of 5% to deepen financial inclusion amongst the middle-class investors. There isn’t also much attention focussed towards the health & protection needs of the middle and lower income class individuals. Allowing tax deduction provisions for life & health insurance schemes under Section 80 will help address the needs of this class, which forms a major chunk of the country’s population.
Under budget 2018, the Finance Minister of India has proposed the extension of scheme Pradhanmantri Vaya Vandana Yojana(PMVVY) till March, 2020. Moreover, it has also been proposed by the FM that the current limit of investment will increase to Rs 15 lakh from the pre-existing limit of Rs 7.5 lakh for every senior citizen. PMVVY is a government backed pension scheme that was introduced to secure the future of senior citizens in India. The scheme was launched on May 4th 2017 and was initially available for 1 year. The amount invested in PMVVY is known as purchase price. As per the pension plan option chosen by an individual i.e. (monthly, quarterly, yearly), the pension is provided as arrears starting from the end of the period chosen. Based on the amount invested, the maximum tenure of the policy is 10 years. The increase in the investment limit is proved to be beneficial to seniors.
A throng of 1,22,000 workers have signed a deal to switch to a new pension scheme backed by TATA Steel UK after they were affected by the end of the 15 billion pound pension scheme. According to the reports, it has been confirmed that approximately 97,000 members have indicated their shift from British English Pension Scheme to the New Plan by returning their option form, whereas, just 14% of the members chose to stick with the old pension scheme. As a part of the biggest pension conference conducted in the UK, the options form was distributed to around 1,22,000 scheme’s members. Among which 97,000 members filled the forms completely and returned them. TATA Steel UK has welcomed the outcome of the conference conducted as a positive choice. However, the spokesperson of the company has stated that much work is still required to deliver a secure future for their UK business.
In his Budget speech 2018, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley focused on caring for the senior citizens. He announced various tax & related incentives to decrease the fiscal burden on people above 60 years of age and above. All these moves are very welcome since senior-citizens face rising health-care expenses and depend upon their income earned from interest & pension. From affording a 5-fold increment in the tax exemption limit on income earned from savings, recurring deposits and fixed deposits held with post offices and banks of Rs.50, 000, to eliminating the tax deducted at source on this income, budget 2018 offers well-deserved relief to senior citizens. This is done by leaving a more money in the hands of senior citizens savers who are totally dependent on earned interest to meet their day to day expenses. Another tax change is the offer to increase the yearly tax deduction limit for medical insurance premium or/and medical reimbursement to Rs. 50,000 for the elderly. An applause-worthy step is setting the ceiling for tax deduction for medical costs incurred on specific critical diseases to Rs. 1 lakh, regardless of the age of the senior citizen.
Payment banks and small finance banks can now offer the Atal Pension Yojana or APY. The Central government believes that such a move will considerably increase the coverage of the plan. The government is of the opinion that these banks will strengthen the current distribution channels of the APY scheme. As per the Ministry of Finance, this step will further help in boosting outreach to subscribers under the scheme. As of now, ten small finance banks and eleven payment banks have obtained licenses from RBI to initiate banking operations in India. Participation in Atal Pension Yojana helps in building a pensioned society and also provides viable fee revenue to banks by way of alluring incentives for mobilizing the scheme at the rate of Rs 120 to 150 per account. As per government reports, by the end of January 2018, more than 84 lakh subscriptions were registered under the scheme.
Indians resumed their position of best placed in retirement planning in a global survey conducted by Aegon Retirement Readiness Index (ARRI), in 2017. The superannuation survey was done among 15 countries. Aegon Retirement Readiness Survey 2017, was based on 6 parameters including - personal responsibility of the respondents, mindfulness, financial understanding and responsibilities, retirement planning, and income replacement. ARRI said that the report is not illustrative of the general population and is directed towards the medium and high-income earners across these cities. India ranks the highest on the ARRI score index with 7.6 score, among the 15 major economies of the world. US, Brazil, China and UK follow the trail with a score of 6.9, 6.4, 6.3 and 6.2 respectively. Spain (4.7) and Japan (5.1) scored the lowest on the index.
In a major decision taken by the Indian Government, it has decided to allocate a total of Rs 50 lakh crore for the infrastructure, in the budget released for the current financial year. At the same time, there are also certain provisions introduced in the budget to improve the life of retirees/senior citizens. “A life of dignity” comes with the confidence to ensure the income security of senior citizens in India. SelFIES (Standard of Living indexed, Forward-starting, Income-only Securities) is a long-term bond introduced to help retirees lead their pre-retirement lifestyle even after their retirement. Most of the times, part-time employees, people from low-income group, rural workers, etc. can’t save enough for their retirement due to the obvious lack of funds. SeLFIES will give them access to invest in low-cost, safe and liquid bonds issued by the Indian Government. Financial literacy rate in India is still relatively low; hence, SeLFIES is a welcoming change that will allow people to access their funds when they actually need it, eventually simplifying the process of retirement planning.
In a latest statement released by the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court, the Madurai Bench has favoured an appeal to grant freedom fighter pension to a senior citizen. Earlier, the claimant, Govindarajulu, 91 years of age, was denied pension based on the fact that he was not able to fulfil the specified eligibility criteria for the requirement. According to the set criteria to claim freedom fighter’s pension, the claimant should already have attained the age of 18 at the time of her or his imprisonment. Also, s/he is required to submit a copy of jail records by the authorized committee. In an earlier judgement, Govindarajulu was denied pension, stating that he wasn’t able to submit relevant documents to specify his date of birth. In its statement, the Madras High Court has expressed regrets and apologized for the state’s insensitive approach toward the whole matter. In the latest statement released, Justice K Ravichandra Babu chided the system for its ‘bureaucratic dogmatism” and said that pension facility for freedom fighters is not a charity done by the government, but is a bestowal of honour for those who fought for our freedom. In the judgement released by the Madras High Court, the Tamil Nadu Government has been ordered to grant the pension for Govindarajulu in two weeks.
The Kerala state government is to appoint a ‘committee’ to analyze the socio-economic & legal significance of the CPS (Contributory Pension Scheme). The committee will analyze the effects of 2 facets of the CPS: the transfer of states’ funds to (private) fund managers and the co-occurring existence of 2 schemes in the state- the statutory schemes and the contributory schemes. An announcement was made by finance minister of Kerala Dr. T M Thomas Isaac in a reply to a Calling Attention motion put forward by MLA Mullakkara Ratnakaran. Mr. Ratnakaran demanded the establishment of a ‘commission’ for studying pension plans. Dr. Isaac has accepted Mr. Ratnakaran’s demand for specifying a time-duration for the committee to present its report. The committee members and schedule are yet to be announced later. As per the contributory pension scheme, a government employee contributes a decided percentage of his/her basic salary, it is then combined with the dearness allowance and an equal portion is contributed by the government. A pension fund manager will be entrusted with the same. The fund manager will invest the money in the shares and mutual funds.
Looking at the fluctuations in the equity market, Indians have now started opting for traditional pension plans as well as life insurance plans instead of ULIPs
. As reported by Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority, people are now inclined more towards life insurance policies such as life insurance (67.8% of products in the market were purchased). Moreover, 18.6% pension plans were purchased in the financial year 2015-16. The sales of these products have increased as compared to year-on-year sale.
Sales of ULIPs have gone down, and its contribution to the insurance pool has slipped from 16.1% (2014-15) to 13.6% (2015-16). Out of Rs. 25 lakh crore invested by life insurance policies, only Rs. 3.4 lakh crore was from ULIPs. The traditional products have a major share in the current market. In this sector, life funds contributed Rs 16.9 lakh crore. Moreover, Rs 4.6 lakh crore was the contribution of the pension funds.
Written By: PolicyBazaar - Updated: 19 February 2020