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Intelligent Pensions agrees with FCA to suspend DB transfer business

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Intelligent Pensions has agreed with the FCA to suspend offering advice on defined benefit pension transfers.

A note published on the FCA register says Intelligent Pensions must “immediately cease to provide advice in relation to the transfer, or conversion, of safeguarded benefits under a pension scheme to flexible benefits.”

As of this morning, the company was still advertising its pension transfer service to advisers.

A spokeswoman for Intelligent Pensions says: “Following discussions with the FCA we have voluntarily agreed to temporarily suspend offering advice and arranging DB transfers.

“We are working with legal and compliance experts and remain confident that our recommendations and advice process deliver good outcomes for our clients and that we will be able to demonstrate this to the FCA quickly.”

Intelligent Pensions has built up a profile in the adviser market as a specialist in pension transfer advice, and often acts as an outsourcing partner to other advisers who do not have the necessary permissions for DB transfer advice.

The FCA is expected to launch a consultation into DB transfers over the coming months.

Money Marketing reported last month on the growing sense of unease among advisers and providers about the surge in demand for DB transfer advice, and for more regulatory clarity on when a transfer is suitable.


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There are 10 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Rory Percival 7th June 2017 at 9:24 am

    A warning from me last Autumn about FCA actions on DB transfers:

    • Lol …. the warnings on DB transfers have been there since Noah picked up his hammer and saw …..
      nice plug for your web site though !

    • Essentially the article says it’s OK to recommend a transfer if it’s suitable and watch out if it’s not because the FCA will be after you and take a hard line.

      Does this really add anything? Website does look nice though!

      Here’s my prediction… at some point in the next 5 years there will be an event (probably a major market correction) that causes the current spate of DB transfers to be looked at very closely and many will be found wanting in the view of clients, press and public (possibly fuelled by claims companies and advisers). Politicians and regulators, not wanting to shoulder blame or costs, will look for a scapegoat – no prizes for guessing who will bleat. Advice that doesn’t meet the criteria commonly known as ‘bullet proof’ will result in compensation. Some advice that does meet the criteria will also pay compensation.

      If you didn’t personally go through the last DB pension ‘scandal’ then you will rightly think me a bit eccentric or cynical. If you did, I suspect you have been nodding to yourself as you read the above.

      Carry on.

  2. A little worrying that they cannot demonstrate to the FCA already that they offer good advice.

  3. Anyone who has used them as an outsourced partner should probably be checking their PI T&Cs by now

  4. I’m struggling to think of something positive to say to say about this firm.

  5. Who is doing the job of an IFA?
    We appear to have shadow directorships from the FCA and Paul Lewis. Neither are qualified!!

  6. Anyone who has referred to them should be concerned about the compensation coming from them when the seemingly inevitable happens. Those who haven’t just make sure you’ve got the money to pay for the FSCS bills.

  7. Not surprised. Unaware that they need to consider the end investment? Really? As experts they were unaware?

    Not aware of their due diligence responsibilities? As experts they were unaware?

    2 page suitability reports? Really? That do not sufficiently explains the risks involved or relays the critical evaluation of all factors with a balanced decision and rationale!

    No holistic sustainability stress tests!

    I have always doubted their self declared “expert” status, and I find this shows they are far from it! .

    Love how in Money Marketing their PR try and spin that they deliver good advice outcomes – laughable given the FCA giving them the choice to jump before being pushed.

    Sausage factory advice delivered by the incompetent; certainly not specialist advice being delivered by experts!

    An example of ambition and ability not matching.

    This should be seen as a warning to schemes and their members that not all advice or advisers are equal, and many, like this crowd, incorrectly position themselves as experts just because they passed an exam 12 years ago and network with the mis-informed.

    • If this was the case, then you can expect over 8,000 complaints (number of pension transfers they’ve processed since Pensions Freedom) in the medium-term to rip up our industry, make our FSCS levy and PII premiums go to the moon and never return.

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