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Metlife and Co-op go live on Options

Metlife and Co-operative Financial Services are to go live with the Options’ transfer service before the end of the month.

The firms signed up to the Association of British Insurers’ initiative in June. They will join the 14 pension and annuity providers that have already gone live with the system.

Metlife began using Options for pension-to-pension transfers this week.

The Options’ initiative was extended to cover pension-to-pension transfers in August. Five firms – Aegon, Aviva, Legal & General, Prudential and Standard Life – are already using the system in this way. Co-operative Financial Services will start using the open market option transfer service next week.

Scottish Widows and Zurich are the only life companies that have signed up to the scheme but not gone live with Options despite the fact the service launched in December.

Zurich previously said it would be using the system by the third quarter of this year but has pushed this back to the end of the year.

Scottish Widows, which previously said it did not consider that going live with Options a priority, now says it will begin using the system in November.

ABI spokesman Jon French says: “We urge those companies that are not currently using Options to start doing so as soon as possible.”

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