Applying for income drawdown

Discover what you need to know

Before you apply for income drawdown

Income drawdown offers a flexible way of taking money from your pension. Before you can apply, there’s just a few things you need to consider.

Remember – you must be the minimum retirement age (currently 55, 57 from 6 April 2028 unless you have a protected pension age) and have an Aviva Pension policy number beginning with AV2 to apply.

There are several points to bear in mind before you apply for income drawdown.


Don't forget to shop around

Remember to compare our offering with other providers’ products. Think about everything from fund charges to investment options to make sure you’re choosing the right option. Pension Wise from MoneyHelper is a free, impartial, government-backed service. If you're 50 or over and you want to understand your retirement options, make it your first port of call. Visit MoneyHelper or call 0800 138 3944 for details.

The value of your pension may change

Remember that with income drawdown, your pension remains invested in fund(s) of your choice. So the value of your pension could go down as well as up and you may get back less than has been paid in. This – as well as the withdrawals you’re making – means income drawdown might not provide you with an income for life.

Review how your pension stays invested

The investments you've used to grow your savings might not be suitable for taking an income. So it's important to ensure you're invested in suitable funds as you start to take drawdown. If you're not sure where to invest your money, or you want some help choosing funds, Investment Pathways is an initiative to help you choose how to invest. We take you through our Investment Pathway options later in this process.

Learn more about understanding investment risk and think about the level of risk and loss you will be comfortable with. Regularly review the funds you’ve selected to ensure they still meet your needs. 

Things to consider

Ready to apply? Before you do, make sure you have an idea of what you want to get out of income drawdown. 

You must provide us with details of your bank account before any money can be paid out. You can add your bank details to your pension policy from within MyAviva. 

How much do you want to withdraw?

You can take up to 25% of your pension pot tax-free as a lump sum or series of withdrawals. If you’d like regular income, consider how often you want to take money. Also think about what combination of tax-free and taxable income suits you best.

If you’re making a single withdrawal

If you want to make a single withdrawal you may need to sell some of your investments so that you’ve got enough money in your cash account to make the withdrawal.

If you’re making regular withdrawals

If you want to make regular withdrawals, your money will automatically move across to your cash account so you can take it as an income. Just let us know which investments you want your income to come from. You have the flexibility to change how much you withdraw and how often.

Could income drawdown affect your tax position?

Taking money from your pension may affect your tax position. This will depend on your individual circumstances and may be subject to change. Normally you can take up to 25% of your pension pot tax-free and the rest may be subject to tax, depending on your personal circumstances.

The lump sum allowance is how much you can be paid from all your pensions tax-free during your lifetime and in 2024/2025 it’s £268,275. The lump sum and death benefit allowance is the tax-free limit for payments during your lifetime and on death – it’s currently £1,073,100. UK Income Tax is payable on any benefits taken above these limits.

Financial advice

If you’re looking for help with your pension or retirement options, our financial advice support team can help you decide whether financial advice is right for you.

Important documents

Income drawdown is a feature of the Aviva Pension. Please read these important documents to fully understand the aims, risks, charges and tax treatment involved.

We will always adhere to our 'best execution practices' as set out in our latest order execution policy (PDF 149 KB). What's more we also have a policy to prevent conflicts of interest (PDF 103 KB) that might affect your investment. And if there's ever one we can't prevent we promise to let you know.

Ready to begin?

Start your income drawdown application in just a few clicks:

Apply through MyAviva

  • Log in
  • Select ‘Details’ under your pension 
  • Select the ‘My Options’ menu in the top right and choose ‘Withdrawals’

Pension Wise

Pension Wise from MoneyHelper is a free, government-backed service offering clear, impartial and specialist guidance on your retirement options. If you’re aged 50 or over, this service is available to you. Visit the MoneyHelper website or call 0800 138 3944 for full details of the service.

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Income drawdown articles

Take a look at our library of helpful articles and guides.

Product provided by: Aviva Pension Trustees UK Limited. Registered in England No. 2407799. Aviva, Wellington Row, York, YO90 1WR. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Firm Reference Number 465132.