Long term financial planning with Stage 4 Breast Cancer

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I got diagnosed with early Stage 4 Breast cancer last year at 40 years old. I'm currently still paying into my work based pension. I am aware I will be extremely,extremely fortunate to still be here around retirement age, but I'm also aware of ongoing advances in treatment options, and you never know what the future holds. I am considering stopping my pension contributions, but perhaps putting monthly contributions into a long term savings plan so I have some financial back up when the time comes when I am no longer able to work.  I have paid off my mortgage but live alone so I am solely responsible for my financial future and care I may need. Any advice or contacts for financial advisors who have an understanding of my situation would be gratefully received!

  • Hello  ,

    Thanks for getting in touch and I am sorry to hear about your condition. Stopping pension contributions is something to think very carefully on. If the main concern is that you may not be able to access the funds in your lifetime due to your health, there are options around this. Most workplace and private pensions have an option for ill health retirement should you become permanently incapable of working. It may be worth contacting your pension provider and asking them about their criteria for this before making any decision. If the pension offers an ill health retirement this would potentially allow you early access to your pension benefits regardless of your age. It is also worth noting that pension contributions offer valuable tax benefits that you may not get from other savings accounts.

    This can all be very complex with the amount of savings and pension options available and an adviser may be useful to help organise this. For recommendations about advisers, you can speak to family and friends to see if they have used any services before. You can also visit www.findanadviser.org/find-an-adviser.aspx

    Tell the adviser what’s needed e.g., advice on retirement and savings options due to a cancer diagnosis. The Financial Adviser should arrange a meeting to discuss these needs and do a fact-finding exercise (this is where they ask questions about finances and personal situation). Their next step is to research options and put together their recommendation.
    MoneyHelper also have some useful websites and tips for choosing a Financial Advisor. Please access the link below for more information:
    When choosing a financial adviser; always check that they, and the company they work for, are authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
    It’s possible to check individuals and companies on the FCA register:
    To speak to the FCA directly, phone 0800 111 6768 from 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday (except public holidays), and 9am to 1pm Saturdays.

    I hope this provides you with a bit of helpful information. If you have any further questions or would like to discuss things such as mortgages or insurance, then please don’t hesitate to get back in touch.

    Yours Sincerely,


    Chris H
    Financial Guide




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