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FSA urged to step in on pension credits

Scottish Equitable is urging the FSA to shoulder responsibility if the Government&#39s proposed pension credits leave some stakeholder savers out of pocket in retirement.

The company fears that, unless the FSA issues a clear statement giving life offices the green light to assume that the top-up payments will be in force by 2003, they may face redress from pensioners who would have been better off not to save.

ScotEq says life offices need to be confident that everyone putting money into their stakeholder schemes will benefit on retirement.

But because stake holder is available from April, life offices will be left to sell it for at least 18 months without being certain that pension credit will happen.

Experts believe the pros pect of a general election within the year also puts pension credit under threat.

ScotEq pensions development director Stewart Ritchie says: “Nobody wants low earners to pay into a scheme where they are not sure the investor will benefit and so for that reason I welcome the pension cre dit but I would equally welcome a clear statement from the FSA that we are entitled to assume pension credit will happen.”

Legal & General pension strategy director Adrian Boulding says: “We have not heard a reaction from other political parties about pension credit and if they would implement this policy.”

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