Scottish Equitable, a long-term supporter of the Raising Standards scheme, is overhauling its back office after a glitch led to it producing client literature not compliant with the initiative.
The firm switched to man-ual processing of its older section 32 contract annual statements after a system problem but had to issue new contracts after it found the statements did not comply with Raising Standards’ requirements.
The main problem was und-erstood to be the inclusion in the annual statements of bid/ offer spreads, the sort of jargon which is against the aims of Raising Standards. ScotEq is reconfiguring its systems. It is not yet known how many customers were affected.
The Raising Standards scheme, set up in 2000, aims to promote better standards of customer service, clear product information and ease of comparison between products.
ScotEq was among the first to adopt the scheme, gaining accreditation in October 2001, and praised by the Pensions Protection Investments Accredi- tation Board, for playing a “major role in developing awareness of the scheme”.
A ScotEq spokeswoman says: “We are working to sort out the system problem as soon as possible.”
Roberts Clark director Ashley Clark says: “Raising Standards is a good thing but the diffi- culty is that we are talking about legal contracts which are difficult to simplify.”