Our surrender values
All our regular savings or lump sum contracts, for life or a fixed term, can be cashed in. There is no cash-in value on protection policies (e.g. Mortgage Protection, Income Protection). Surrender values under guaranteed savings plans are specified in the policy terms.
- Surrender values on with-profit contracts remain at our discretion, so we can reduce them if necessary if investment markets perform poorly. This can lead to surrender values being less than the amount paid in if policies are surrendered in the early years.
- We do not normally expect to return less than your premiums on lump sums – including Flexible Savings Plans (FSPs) and ISAs paid on a monthly basis (but see below). Bonuses are added annually and we allow for part-years. Final Bonuses may also apply, but not in the first three years (and not at any time for the Monthly Savings ISA (Table 29), Monthly Savings Junior ISA (Table 30) or Guaranteed Five Year Savings Plan). At any stage, we may apply a Market Value Reduction on this type of plan. A deduction (currently 3%) applies to all such premiums that are not left for a complete year. For lump sums, the qualifying period is measured from the date we receive your premium; for monthly plans from the end of the year (FSPs:calendar year, monthly ISAs:tax year) in which premiums were paid.
- Monthly Savings ISAs and FSPs are flexible plans and allow you to vary or suspend your premiums. However, if they are cashed in before the end of the year you pay into them, they will be treated as surrender requests and incur a deduction of one month’s premium (plus 3% of any top-up premiums). If they are cashed in during the year after the premiums are paid, there will be an early redemption charge of 3%.
- On with-profits fixed term regular savings plans, we normally refund the premiums paid, less a deduction of two months’ premiums in the first and second year, or one month’s premium in the third and fourth year, and with no deduction thereafter. For regular savings policies held for 6 years or more, what we pay on surrender may be higher than the premiums paid if our investment experience supports this.
- On Guaranteed Five Year Savings Plans we contractually refund the premiums paid, less a deduction of two months’ premiums in the first and second year, or one month’s premium in the third and fourth year, and with no deduction thereafter. This is defined in the policy terms.
Our ISAs and Tax-Exempt Savings Plans (TESPs) do not suffer tax and pay higher bonuses. We effectively pay basic rate tax (20%) on all other plans. HMRC rules on payouts are complicated and we summarise them below. Please contact us if you would like to discuss your personal circumstances.
- There is no tax liability when you cash in an ISA.
- There may be a tax liability at your marginal tax rate if you cash in a TESP in the early years, as it is subject to the same duration limits as other “Qualifying Policies”.
- Fixed term savings plans for 10 years or more are “Qualifying Policies” – which means no liability to higher rates of tax on the profit provided they are held for 10 years.
- On With-Profit Bonds and Flexible Savings Plans, and on savings which mature after 5 years or are cashed before 10 years, you are subject to tax on the profit at your marginal rate, with credit for any tax we have paid. With the exception of TESPs, this only affects higher rate taxpayers. It is your tax status at the time of encashment which counts.