Investors Trust enters into futures contracts with a consortium of international banks to provide an option to trade units in the iShares S&P500 Index ETF at a fixed price on a fixed date in future if the value of the S&P Index falls. This is a pre-agreed and automated process, so when you (or anyone else) starts a new pension plan, a new futures contract is triggered based on the monthly amount and duration selected and immediately activated. The cost of purchasing the futures contract options are paid for from the account fees and charges you pay to Investors Trust, which are detailed in the pension plan terms and conditions here: https://PensionsForNomads.com/terms-conditions/
By using a consortium of several international banks instead of just one, the counterparty risk is significantly lower than if just one bank was used for this purpose. For commercial reasons Investors Trust does not publish its contract partners and instead demonstrates the creditworthiness of them by being regularly audited by a credit ratings agency. The credit rating of Investors Trust is A- (Excellent).
Because the guaranteed minimum value is contracted at a fixed cost with a fixed payment schedule, if you do not make the payments into your pension as planned, the futures contracts do not get paid for, lapse, and therefore you lose the minimum guaranteed return. Investors Trust allow you to make payments up to 90 days late and still keep the minimum guaranteed value in place; any longer than this and the futures contracts will automatically expire.
Please make sure that you make the payments into your pension plan as per the plan, because the guaranteed minimum value is a huge benefit and makes planning your retirement so much safer and easier. If a payment is missed because your credit or debit card payment has been declined by your bank or your card has expired, you will automatically receive a notification email from Investors Trust and you should login to your account and update your card details as soon as practicably possible to ensure that your pension plan stays up-to-date and the guaranteed minimum value stays in place.
If for any reason you do not stick to your pension plan and the futures contract options expire, you lose the guarantee of the minimum value but you do not lose the money you have invested. All monies you invest will still be invested into the iShares S&P500 Index ETF and your pension value will be entirely dependent on the performance of the S&P500 Index.