More than three million self-employed people could be left without a pension in the next 10 years, according to a recent report.
The warning came from the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE).
It made the claim based on the growth of freelancers over the last decade, and the number of those who have not started retirement saving.
In the three months to July 2019, the Office for National Statistics said there were 4.9m people registered as self-employed – up 15% on the previous quarter.
Research from the IPSE estimated that 55% of those do not have a pension and, at the current growth rate, the UK’s self-employed population could hit 6m by 2028.
That would leave around 3.3m without a pension, while 1.74m would have no other savings such as ISAs, assets or other means.
Jonathan Lima-Matthews, public affairs manager at the IPSE, said: “It is deeply worrying that so many hardworking people could be left facing bleak later years because there simply aren’t products that work for them.
“Freelancers are the essential drivers of innovation for the UK economy, so we all rely on them being given every chance to thrive.
“The Government must urgently get behind innovative pensions solutions [for the self-employed] and push the industry to do much more. The longer this is left, the worse it will get.”
Auto enrolment has gone a long way to improving the private pensions of employees but those provisions do not extend to the self employed.
There are attractive tax advantages to be achieved from saving in a pension but this alone does not seem sufficient to encourage the self employed to put money away for their retirement.
If you are unsure of your current pensions arrangements it is advised to speak to your professional advisor.