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Fatchett warns test case could hit networks in FSAVC review

The pension review test case being brought against DBS could limit the amount networks can charge members in the FSAVC review, according to the solicitor representing the case.

Armstrong Neal partner Gareth Fatchett claims he has received 100 calls in a week from current and former DBS members who intend to make similar claims against the network if the test case is successful.

Birmingham-based Fatchett believes the case could mean networks will have to seek members&#39 consent before recouping the cost of the FSAVC review which has just got under way.

In the test case, Maywill Financial Services principal Terry Willison will claim the fees levied by DBS to cover some of the costs of each pension review case were unlawful. The fees ranged from £90 to £900.

Willison will argue the network should have asked members&#39 permission to make the charge under the terms of their contracts. If he wins, Willison will recoup between £5,000 and £6,000.

If DBS loses the case, it could cost the network millions of pounds as it will have to reimburse members these fees. It says, of the total £12.7m costs it faced under the pension review, members were asked to pay £3.4m and shareholders £9.3m.

Fatchett says: “The outcome of this case could fundamentally affect other networks. It will clarify the legal position for the FSAVC review.

“Networks may have to seek members&#39 consent to be able to recoup the cost of the new review.”

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