Financial education organisation ifs University College has launched a new pension transfer qualification following the FCA’s proposals to tighten advice in the area.
Last month, the regulator revealed plans to require all transfers out of defined benefit schemes to be undertaken by advisers with a pension transfer specialist qualification.
Transfers from other “safeguarded benefits”, such as plans with guaranteed annuity rates, will require advice to be taken but a specialist qualification will not be necessary.
Ifs University College’s single unit qualification, the award in pensions transfers (AwPETR) meets the requirements set out by the FCA.
Vice principal of banking, finance and regulation Martin Day says: “Access to high quality professional advice on pensions has always been important for consumers but the recent reforms mean it is now more vital than ever. With greater freedom comes greater risk and it is essential that advisers have the advanced knowledge and understanding to be able to make appropriate recommendations.”
He adds: “The recent reforms mark some of the most significant changes that the industry has seen in recent years and the launch of this qualification is very timely. It is vital that anyone advising on pensions operates to the highest of professional and ethical standards.”