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Standard in mailing blunder

Standard Life is issuing IFAs with an unqualified apology after an admin bungle potentially offered thousands of IFA clients advice on stakeholder pensions.

Money Marketing was inundated with phone calls and letters from enraged IFAs who believed Standard was trying to cross-sell to cli ents they had introduced to the life office.

The glitch came to light this week when Standard Life Bank sent out a mailing to IFA clients which had been meant only for its direct customers.

The mailing, described by the bank as a “data-extract problem”, meant IFA-introduced corporate clients were offered stakeholder.

IFAs who have corporate accounts with Standard Life Bank received the letters last week.

The letter read: “We would like to offer you Standard Life Assurance Company&#39s financial review service.

“This free and no obligation meeting face to face with one of Standard Life&#39s corporate financial planning consultants allows you to discuss stakeholder pensions and any other financial topics that may be of interest to you.”

Redhill IFA Charles Jacq ues principal Nick Carew-Gibbs says: “I am extremely worried that, if they were mailing me, they were mailing my clients. You have to wonder how many other advisers&#39 clients have been contacted.”

One IFA who wished to remain anonymous says: “Our account was introduced by an IFA yet we receive this touting letter.”

Standard Life Bank sales and marketing director David Macmillan says: “It was never our intention to contact these clients and we have apologised to IFAs for this genuine error.”

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