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Friends is slammed over benefits’ backlog

Friends Provident has been attacked for delays in paying retirement benefits and for failing to communicate with IFAs.

A Richard Jacobs Pension & Trustee Services’ client was due to get benefits on January 30 but the payment was delayed.

Director Emily Jacobs says the client called Friends on February 2 and was “extremely unhappy” with the way she was spoken to.

She was told that the payment would be delayed by up to four weeks and that other customers would be delayed if her case was pushed through.

Jacobs called Friends on February 3 and was told of the backlog. After the complaint, the client got her payment earlier this week.

Jacobs says: “There was absolutely no communication to us and there seems to be no communication between departments. The people we had contact with are not aware of the timescales on the pension claims side, which made us and the client more stressed than we needed to be. This is a direct result of the Resolution deal. We have never had any issues in the past.”

Friends head of corporate customer services Richard Saunders says: “The client’s chosen retirement date as set out in her contract was Saturday January 30, 2010. We were unable to pay out until the first working day after that time, Monday February 1, 2010. The payment was made within five working days.

“We are experiencing higher volumes of pension requests as a result of the impending change to minimum retirement age in April but we have plans to ensure minimal disruption to our clients as we process these requests.”


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There is one comment at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Based on my recent dealings with Friends Provident thay have no interest in IFAs.

    I have two fairly large group schmes which I set up a number of years ago. FP are unable to supply me with copies of annual statements.

    I therefore need to contact the clients and arrange for them to send a copy statement before I see them.

    I think life assurers and lenders have basically abandoned any adherence to TCF.

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