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If the instructions for your DVD recorder are written gobbledygook and you end up recording the wrong programme, it can be annoying. If your motor insurer speaks jargon and you misunderstand your breakdown cover, it can be expensive. And if you are baffled by your pension firm and make the wrong decision, you could face a truly miserable retirement.

In recent years we have paid a lot of attention to the language used in pensions. In April 2006, a major change in pensions law came into effect. As many pension schemes collapsed, leaving thousands of people worried about their retirement, it was revealed that many of them had been given the wrong information.

The Parliamentary Ombudsman published a report that suggested some of the information people had received when they joined their company's pension scheme was 'inaccurate, often incomplete, inconsistent and misleading'. The new law, which came into effect on what was dubbed 'A-day' now gives people more control over their pension planning.

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