Tim* arranged a Pension Loss appointment after transferring £150,000 of his pension seven years ago. He had tried several different routes before approaching MaPS’ pension specialists.
A financial adviser had recommended a transfer to a Malta-based offshore pension scheme, known as a QROPS. Tim agreed to transfer all his pensions, including his workplace Defined Benefit (DB) pension. Years later, he learned his pensions were invested in an unregulated overseas property company, now bust, and a Bond with an Irish Life Insurance company.
Tim says: “I was told I needed £250,000 for a comfortable retirement – I only had £150,000. I was told I needed to take a high risk to get a bigger pension. I’ve maxed out on a mortgage – I’m just surviving. I was green, naïve. I still am.”
Tim complained to the relevant ombudsman in Ireland, with the help of a financial adviser. But his case was turned down as Tim had been persuaded to sign a form saying he was content with the high risk. The financial adviser recommended a Claims Management Company (CMC) as a next step which Tim was considering.
Ken, a pensions specialist who is expert in pension loss and recovery, supported Tim. He says:
“Tim’s case is particularly complex. It’s no wonder he didn’t know who to turn to. It was obviously overwhelming him. Tim told me: ‘I just want to be told what to do next. I don’t know what I’m doing.’ That’s a common response to this type of crisis – and anyone can be a victim.”
Ken pieced together with Tim what had happened and talked him through possible next steps. Ken told him that a transfer from a DB scheme in 2015 may have required independent financial advice from a UK registered adviser. He provided template letters to organisations that had been involved in the transfer at the time. Redress can often be a long process, but Ken encouraged Tim to contact the service again to look at any response he receives and guide him on next steps.
Ken says: “With our guidance, Tim can potentially save costly CMC fees and may be able to request reinstatement into his workplace scheme.”
* Customer’s name has been changed.