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‘Christmas money making opportunity’ email triggers Scottish Life review

Note to IFAs from sales staff says make money transferring pension.

Scottish Life is set to review its compliance procedures after one of its sales staff sent an email to advisers telling them they could make money for Christmas spending by transferring clients’ pensions.

The email was entitled ‘Christmas money making opportunity’ and said: “If you would like to make some extra money for Christmas then read on.

“Do you have any existing clients that need a review of their current pension arrangement? If the answer is yes, then all I ask is that you send me the projections to retirement and the client’s attitude to risk.”

A spokesman for the company confirmed the email was issued to a small group of IFAs on 15 November. Disciplinary procedures involving the individual behind the email have begun and the firm says it will examine its compliance process. 

The spokesman adds: ”The tone of the email was inappropriate even though it was meant in a light-hearted way.”

Thameside Wealth director Tom Kean says: “The whole point of the RDR was to move things on to a more professional level. This smacks of sales.”

Scottish Life is considering carrying out a separate review of its annuity sales following an investigation by Channel 4’s Dispatches broadcast last week. The programme highlighted the case of a retiree being sold a single life annuity despite supplying a marriage certificate and his wife’s birth certificate. 

Scottish Life has agreed to put in place the pension that would have been payable had a joint-life annuity been sold.

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