DB (defined benefit) transfer advice has become a significant issue in the UK. Ever since the introduction of ‘pension freedom’ in 2015, thousands of people have been persuaded to move their DB pension into an unsuitable alternative – in most cases leading to either a substantial or total loss of their funds.
The question is – what is the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) doing to help?
A statement by the FCA’s chief exec
On the 4th March 2020, the FCA’s Chief Executive, Andrew Bailey, spoke out in front of the newly-formed Treasury Committee. The regulator has recently been accused of doing little to tackle poor pension transfer advice – and Bailey took the opportunity to fight back against the claims.
Firstly, he made their opinions on pension freedom clear. He stated that it was “rushed through too quickly” and, despite the enormity of the decision, pension freedom “wasn’t considered enough in the early days of policymaking”. The chancellor at the time chose not to consult the industry before making the announcement – and as a result, the FCA has been playing “catch-up from the get-go”.
But that doesn’t mean they have been unsuccessful. Over the last two years, “around 370 firms have left the market” as a direct result of the FCA’s actions. These account for 12% of the entire market.
What’s more, the regulator is currently investigating a large number of other companies, who are believed to be giving poor DB transfer advice. They have written to over 1700 firms demanding improvements to their DB transfer conduct and – to crack down on the problem – the FCA has recently provided “more direction for the industry on how they give advice and guidance”.
DB transfer claims at Money and Me
2019 was a busy year for us, here at Money and Me Claims. We saw a significant increase in the number of consumers seeking our help, particularly with respect to claims for DB pension transfers. Many of which are likely to have been advised by one of the 370 firms mentioned above.
With the FCA’s investigation ongoing – and thousands of firms being told to improve their game – it’s fair to say this is a growing issue. The FCA may be taking positive action but, unfortunately, many consumers have already been given poor advice to transfer their DB pension and had their fingers burned, so to speak. As such, we expect to see a further rise in clients in 2020 and we’re ready to handle the increase in cases.
Get in touch to start your DB transfer claim
If you believe you have fallen victim to poor DB transfer advice, you do have a few remedial options:
- Claims can be made for free to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS), the Pensions Ombudsman (TPO), or the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).
- You can claim directly to the person to which your claim relates, or, if you happen to have it, through your personal insurance for financial mis-selling.
- Alternatively, you can recruit the help of a claims management company.
Bearing in mind you only have one chance at making a claim for compensation, option three is often a good idea for those who would like advice and guidance on their claim. For example, here at Money and Me Claims, we’re fully authorised and regulated by the FCA (FRN 838307) and have over 10 years’ experience in the industry. Therefore, we can advise on your eligibility to make a claim and – if you wish – can take care of the entire claims process on your behalf.
Last year, we recovered £14,000,000 in compensation and our FOS success rate currently averages more than 83% (over the last six years). What’s more, we operate on a no win no fee basis. If your case is successful, we charge 25% + VAT – and if you cancel after the 14-day cooling-off period, you will be asked to pay a fair fee for work already done. But if there’s no claim, or you’re unsuccessful, we don’t charge a penny. We don’t believe you should be charged for trying to mitigate your losses.
If you have any questions about DB transfer advice – or wish to find out if you have a pension claim – please feel free to get in touch. You can either give us a call on 01236 607952 or send an email to email@example.com and we’ll respond to your enquiry as soon as possible.