Standard Life Active Retirement

For taking your pension money

Standard Life Active Retirement is our ready-made investment solution for customers looking for flexible access to their pension money.

It’s designed to help you balance the need to withdraw money to live on with the need for it to last.

We automatically split your money across three pots so you have a mix of lower risk and growth investments.

The aim is that while you spend money from the lower risk pots, pots 1 and 2, Pot 3 has more opportunity to grow.

Of course, there are no guarantees. Investments can rise and fall and this could reduce how long your money lasts

If you’re 55 or over and thinking about accessing your pension savings, take a look at the full guide on our website for more details.

Designed for customers planning to leave their money invested and take it out over more than five years. It gives you a balance of lower risk investments for the money you take initially and medium risk investments for longer term growth.

We make the day-to-day investment decisions, you stay in control

  • Investment experts review the funds in each pot to make sure that Standard Life Active Retirement is performing in line with expectations.
  • You can take your money as you want – whether that’s as a regular income or lump sum withdrawals.
  • Your money stays invested so potentially has the opportunity to grow in value.
  • You spread the amount of risk you're taking, particularly at the start when you're invested across lower and medium risk funds.

As with any investment, the value of your funds can go down or up, and may be worth less than was paid in.

Expert management

Your money is invested across three pots (funds) based on how you've told us you want to take it:

Pot 1

Lower risk investments designed to remain fairly stable

Pot 2

Lower to medium risk investments aiming to provide a better return than Pot 1

Pot 3

Medium risk investments, aiming to provide a higher return over the longer term

Visual depiction of money invested across three pots.

Investment experts choose where to invest the money in each pot. They review the pots regularly to check they’re meeting their aims, and can make changes to the investments in the pots if they think it’s appropriate.

When you come to take your money, it will come from Pot 1 first until it’s empty, then Pot 2 and finally Pot 3. This means Pot 3 has a chance to grow while you spend money from the lower risk pots.

When you first invest, your money is split across the three pots based on how you’ve indicated you want to take it. It’s then up to you to regularly check how much you have in each pot, and split it across the three pots again if you want. You may want to consider doing this if you take a significant amount from your plan or your income needs change. 

How long your money lasts is affected by how the funds you're invested in through Standard Life Active Retirement perform, how much income you take and how quickly you take it, and how long you live for. There’s no guarantee that your money won’t run out if there are market falls, particularly in the early years. 

It’s important that you regularly review your pension savings to make sure that you don’t run out of money too soon.

Find out more about how Standard Life Active Retirement works >

Standard Life Active Retirement might be right for you if:

  • You’re 55 or over and looking for flexible access to your pension savings.
  • You're planning to take withdrawals from your pension in the next five years and the remaining money to last for more than five years.
  • You’re comfortable leaving your pension savings invested.
  • You want to pass on your remaining pension savings when you die.
  • You’re happy to keep track of your pension savings and make sure your money lasts as long as you need it to.

Important things to think about

  • Overall, you need to be comfortable taking a medium level of investment risk – at times your investments may go down and up significantly. But because the amount you have in each pot will change, the amount of risk you’re taking will change over time.
  • If you’re willing to take more risk, for example if you have sources of guaranteed income, other options may be more suitable for you.
  • If you’re not planning to take any money, other than your tax-free lump sum, in the near future, this option may not be right for you.
  • At the start, we’ll decide how much money goes into each pot. But then it’s up to you to regularly check this and, if you want to, split your money across the pots again.
  • It’s also up to you to decide what you take out and when, and to check that your money will last as long as it needs to.
  • If you choose Standard Life Active Retirement, you can’t invest in any other funds through your pension plan.



Find out how the Standard Life Active Retirement pots have been doing:

Check funds

Find all the information you need about our funds






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