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Pensions minister slams providers’ slow DC transfer times

The pensions minister Guy Opperman has written to five providers raising concerns about the slow transfer times for defined contribution funds.

The correspondence with these five unidentified providers comes in the context of the Department for Work and Pensions consultation on introducing pensions dashboards that closed on 28 January.

Specifically the consultation asks for feedback on the findings of the government’s feasibility study and its recommendations for the pension dashboard.

In the statement concerning the five providers, Opperman says: “In this digital age, you can move your money around almost instantly – paying bills, booking holidays and putting money into savings online.

“However some firms take more than 100 days to complete pension transfers, totally out of step with the rest of the financial services industry. That’s unacceptable, which is why I’m holding their feet to the fire on this.”

Opperman has championed the dashboard, technology and initiatives that can speed up pension transfers in the past.

In a keynote speech at the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association conference last October, Opperman urged pension schemes to sign up to a framework to reduce transfer times between DC plans.

The framework created by the Transfers and Re-Registrations Industry Group aims to ensure pension schemes are able to demonstrate their constant improvements in standards for routine transfers.

The framework commits administrators of occupational pension schemes work rapidly towards a 21-day end-to-end transfer time, and a 14-day timetable for personal pensions.

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