Frequently asked questions

Here you’ll find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about SunFlex Retirement Income.

About SunFlex Retirement Income

Product details

Flexibility if your needs change and available options

Retirement planning from Sun Life Financial

 What is SunFlex Retirement Income?

Available only from Sun Life Financial, SunFlex Retirement Income provides guaranteed lifetime income, plus bonus income that’s linked to market performance, during retirement. You can benefit from market performance through the bonus income, but market dips won’t affect your guaranteed income.

 How does SunFlex Retirement Income work?

SunFlex Retirement Income can be part of your retirement plan. It provides guarantees, the potential for growth, and flexibility. This retirement solution offers:

  • Lifetime minimum income – a retirement paycheque for life, no matter how markets perform.
  • Potential for bonus income – linked to the performance of the funds that you choose. When markets do well, you’ll maximize your income. But no matter how the markets perform, you’ll always have peace of mind knowing that you’ll receive your guaranteed lifetime income.
  • Flexibility for when your needs change – choose to receive a lump sum payment now from the payments you would receive in the future. You can also switch to a fully guaranteed income stream, in case you don’t want any of your income exposed to the markets or if you want to lock-in SunFlex Retirement Income’s performance to date at potentially higher rates.

 Why would I need SunFlex Retirement Income?

If you are age 55+ and have registered savings, are looking for guaranteed income in retirement, and are interested in benefiting from the upside of market activity, SunFlex Retirement Income could be an important part of your retirement plan.

 How do I purchase SunFlex Retirement Income?

Talk to an advisor to see if SunFlex Retirement Income from Sun Life Financial is right for you.

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 When will income start after I purchase SunFlex Retirement Income?

You choose which date you want to start receiving income. You could defer receiving income up to one year from the date you purchase a SunFlex Retirement Income policy.

 How do I know how much bonus income I’ll receive?

Your bonus income will vary, depending on the performance of the funds you choose. When markets do well, you may benefit from bonus income. But no matter how the markets perform, you’ll always have peace of mind knowing that you’ll receive your guaranteed lifetime income.

 How often will my bonus income change?

Your bonus income is reset every year, giving you the opportunity to benefit from market growth.

 Could my bonus income ever disappear entirely?

It’s possible that, in declining return environments, your bonus income could decrease to zero. However, even if your bonus income decreases to zero in any given year, you retain the ability to receive bonus income in the future, if markets recover.

 Do I have to pay income tax on the income I receive from SunFlex Retirement Income?

You will pay tax on the income you receive from SunFlex Retirement Income, since it’s available only for registered money.

 Can my spouse also benefit from SunFlex Retirement Income?

A SunFlex Retirement Income policy can provide income payments for as long as either you or your spouse lives. This option is called “joint life.”

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 Can I get more money from my SunFlex Retirement Income policy if I need more; for example, in an emergency?

You can request a lump sum advance from your future guaranteed payments, as long as you have at least three months of guaranteed payments remaining and didn’t use locked-in funds. You may take up to 3 income advances over the life of your policy. Although this option is available, it’s important to understand the impact of making an income advance on your policy. An advisor can explain the features of SunFlex Retirement Income to you.

 What if I no longer want to be affected by market performance?

You have the option of converting all or part of the income you receive from SunFlex Retirement Income to a fully guaranteed income stream, which will remove the market volatility of your bonus income. The amount of income you convert to the new product may be higher or lower than the income you received from SunFlex Retirement Income.

 What happens if I don’t survive long enough to see the value of SunFlex Retirement Income?

If you select a guaranteed period and pass away during that period, SunFlex Retirement Income provides a death benefit. In general, the death benefit will become smaller with each income payment you receive.

 What is the guaranteed period?

The guaranteed period is the time during which Sun Life Financial will pay a death benefit. If you have at least three months of guaranteed period left, it is also the time during which you can take an income advance, if available.

 What’s the difference between the 2 income strategies for SunFlex Retirement Income?

Future Income Max starts income at a lower level and provides greater potential to increase and smaller potential to decrease bonus income in later years.

Starting Income Max starts income at a higher level but has less potential to increase and more potential to decrease bonus income in later years.

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 Is this product a part of Money for LifeTM?

Money for LifeTM is Sun Life Financial’s approach to retirement planning. An advisor can help you choose the right mix of life, health and wealth solutions to meet your financial goals today, transition into retirement with confidence and live in retirement with peace of mind. Depending on your needs, guaranteed lifetime income and the potential for bonus income from SunFlex Retirement Income could be part of a solution covering your essential costs and lifestyle costs in retirement.

 Can I have other retirement income products, in addition to SunFlex Retirement Income?

SunFlex Retirement Income can be part of an overall retirement plan that could also include income from pensions, registered retirement income funds (RRIFs), guaranteed investment certificates (GICs), and other products.

 What happens to my income if Sun Life Financial can no longer pay my income?

With SunFlex Retirement Income, you can be confident that you’ll have guaranteed lifetime income during retirement – regardless of how long your retirement lasts. You can trust Sun Life Financial, an organization with a history of strong financial ratings and success for over 145 years.

As well, SunFlex Retirement Income is covered by Assuris, a not-for-profit organization that protects Canadian policyholders. Visit www.assuris.ca for more details.

 How do I get more information about SunFlex Retirement Income?

Check out the brochure [PDF, 8 pages, 614 KB] and the client guide [PDF, 24 pages, 1.02 MB] and talk to your advisor today!

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Video: Retirement planning

SunFlex Retirement Income
Watch how SunFlex Retirement Income can help you retire on your terms with guarantees, growth and flexibility.