When you receive poor advice on your pension investment
From 6 April 2015, if you are aged 55 or over, the Government allows you to have access to the whole of your pension pot and either:
- Use it to buy a policy that will give you a regular income to the rest of your life (i.e. an annuity);
- Use it to provide a flexible retirement income; or
- Take it as cash in stages or as the whole in one go.
Understandably, the vast majority of us will endeavour to make the most of these options to meet our individual retirement needs and priorities and in order to do so – will approach a financial adviser for professional advice. In doing so you must make sure that the adviser is approved by the Financial Conduct Authority (the FCA). You can check this free of charge at the FCA Register.
Unfortunately, this is also the time when you also have to be alert to possible pension mis-selling, poor advice and even fraud.
If you think you received poor pension investment advice or were mis-sold an investment
In broad terms, your claim for poor pension advice or mis-selling of the investment is when you feel that you have not got what you wanted or not what was described to you. Perhaps, you would not have entered into the investment at all, had proper advice been provided to you.
As soon as you become aware or suspect that you have been provided with poor advice you should bring it to the attention of the adviser or the firm and give them an opportunity to look into the problem and resolve it for you. We recommend that you do that in writing.
If your complaint has not been resolved to your satisfaction or you do not feel comfortable discussing it with your adviser, there are two options you can pursue:
- For claims up to £150,000, you can bring a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service; and/or
- You can bring a claim before the Court against the financial adviser or the firm for pension investment mis-selling, poor advice or misrepresentation.
What can you claim
The circumstances of each claim will be different and so will the damages and loss that is caused as the result of the poor advice or mis-selling. However, generally, you can claim:
- To be put in the position you would have been in, had the advice been provided properly. This may include a claim for unearned interest and loss of investment opportunity; or
- To be put in the position you would have been in, had the advice never been provided to you at all. This may also include fees and charges you paid for the advice as well as other fees and expenses you may have incurred.
What can you do to spot pension investment fraud
The FCA has launched a ScamSmart campaign that highlights the warning signs you need to be aware of from scammers who want to trick people into investing their hard earned life savings. You can find more information about how to spot a pension scam at: http://scamsmart.fca.org.uk/ .
You can find more information at The Pensions Regulator website.
How we can help
Our team of specialist banking and mis-selling solicitors can assist you with the assessment of your case. Whether it is a complaint to the FOS or Court proceedings, cost-effective solutions can be pursued for you. A no obligation initial appraisal of you matter can be offered at no charge.
Please contact the Banking & Finance Litigation department on 01202 525333.