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The Pensions Primer: a guide to the UK pensions system


This Guide to the UK pensions system gives a detailed description of the current pensions system and some of the archaeology of these layers. The guide is intended for people wanting to learn about UK pensions policy. It should not be used to make individual pensions decisions.

This version of the guide reflects the current position of, and legislated future changes to, the UK pension system as at June 2020. Any change in Government policy that may occur after that date is not included in this version.

Click here to download the Primer.


The PPI has also produced an Historical Annex which provides details of changes in Second Tier Provision in the UK. To download the Historical Annex click here.

You are welcome to use the Pensions Policy Institute's research but please reference any material appropriately. We are always willing to review how the research is being represented and interested to know how far our research is being distributed, feel free to contact us. If you would like to discuss the primer or have any comments please contact Daniela Silcock, or 020 7848 4404.

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PPI Operating Details

King's College
Virginia Woolf Building
1st Floor, 22 Kingsway
London, WC2B 6LE

Tel. 020 7848 3744

Mob. 07718 647 567 


The Pensions Policy Institute is a registered charity and accepts donations from organisations and individuals.