According to research by Hymans Robertson, more than a third (34%) of defined benefit (DB) pension trustees have taken steps to facilitate reputable financial advice for their members as they approach retirement.

In the second instalment of its Evolution of Member Options report series the consultancy found that this trend is likely to grow as a further 11% of trustees have plans in place to offer this service in the next 12 months.

By providing this clear route to trusted advice, trustees and plan sponsors will benefit from a membership that is more likely to be fully engaged with their retirement choices making them less at risk of being victims of unscrupulous financial advisers, teh report suggested.

Ryan Markham, head of member options at Hymans Robertson, said: “Financial advice is complex, but crucial for members. Without it, they are, at best risking sleepwalking into retirement and, at worst they’re in danger of getting picked off by scammers.”

He added that a DB pension is “now likely to be an individual’s most valuable asset, more so even than a property.” He said this intensifies the need for quality, trusted advice to be available at the point of retirement.

“By facilitating or contributing towards the cost of this, trustees can help ensure that their members’ retirements are in trusted hands.”

He continued: “Regardless of how active an approach a scheme takes to member options, at some point their members are going to want to talk to someone they can trust about the choices they have.”