The Government has been questioned by Labour peer Lord kennedy over what qualifications those delivering pensions guidance will need to hold.
Earlier this week the Treasury published details of the guidance guarantee which will support the Government’s flagship pension reforms set out it the Budget. Savers will be able to access the guidance service as many times as they like. As of yet, no qualification requirements have been set out for those delivering the guidance.
Speaking to Money Marketing ahead of the debate, Lord Kennedy said: “I’m concerned about the quality of the guidance. I would hope people giving the guidance will have some sort of qualification. The fact you can be unqualified and be doing this is ridiculous. How can we be sure they actually have the expertise?”
Kennedy is concerned that if the guidance is not up to scratch, the pensions freedom agenda the guidance is designed to support could end up in another misselling scandal.
He said: “We are now going to allow people to dip into their pension pots and they will get guidance and I worry we are at the start of another big problem.
”People were advised to opt out of Serps and get personal pensions and that was madness. There has been a whole litany of this kind of thing in this sector. I want to know whether we have learned the lessons from the misselling of the past.”
Responding to Kennedy’s question in the House of Lords this afternoon the Government’s Treasury spokesman in the Lords, Lord Newby said: “The FCA will be the ultimate backstop in terms of the quality of the advice and monitoring the advice and we will be legislating to give them that explicit power.”