Mis-sold Self Invested Personal Pension Scheme (“SIPP”)

Independent Financial Advisers, the Financial Regulator and the Financial Ombudsman are facing a flood of complaints about mis-sold pensions

What is SIPP?

The Self Invested Personal Pension scheme (“SIPP“) is a government approved money-purchase pension scheme. It was first introduced in 1989 and millions of individuals have participated in the scheme since.

The aim of a SIPP scheme is to have access to a wider range of investments giving an investor more options to invest its money. SIPPs are usually therefore suitable for experienced investors who want to personally manage their pension and the investments in it. SIPPS were never meant for the general public.

Pensions that are paid are liable to income tax, but are not liable to National Insurance contributions. It is important you understand the tax implications arising from your chosen pension scheme, or are advised of the same.

You should also check that your pension provider is registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), 

If you have a SIPP and you were advised to transfer to the same, you may have been given inadequate advice or even misled about the risk involved.

Common problems faced by individuals involved in a SIPP scheme:

  • You did not understand the scheme and were more suited to a traditional pension scheme
    You were subject to a “hard sale” approach when choosing a pension scheme
  • Your adviser suggested, advised or recommended opting for or transferring to a SIPP in comparison to a traditional personal pension
  • Your adviser did not provide you with clear or adequate information or advice on all the potential risks of a SIPP
  • Your adviser limited its advice regarding the SIPP e.g. focused on tax benefits
  • HMRC have since changed its rules on SIPP schemes of which you were not warned or advised

The number of SIPP complaints referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service increased by 86% from 20151 complaints in 2017/18 to 3811 complaints in 2018/19, according to FOS’ annual review published on 15 May 2019.

“Investment and pension complaints are at their highest level in five years. While self-invested personal pensions can give consumers more control over how and where their pension funds are invested, consumers and advisers need to ensure this is the right vehicle for them. Decisions about pensions are some of the most difficult choices people make, and it’s important that consumers understand the risks involved when investing their pension pot.”

FOS chief ombudsman and chief executive Caroline Wayman

I have a SIPP mis-selling complaint

If you have been mis-sold a SIPP, there are several potential solutions:

  • attempting to negotiate with the pension provider/financial adviser;
  • complaining to the pension provider/financial adviser;
  • complaining to the Financial Ombudsman Service; or
  • sending a letter before claim, issuing legal proceedings at Court, and litigating against the pension provider/financial adviser.

Our Financial Services Litigation and Mis-Selling Lawyers get the best results

Our Financial Services Litigation team of Solicitors and Barristers in London are highly experienced in mis-selling litigation and specialise in representing SMEs in high value banking disputes. Our high profile and high value cases regularly appear in the national and international media. We have successfully managed and settled mis-selling court litigation against all major UK banks and regulated financial advisers and have widespread experience in managing claims through redress schemes and complaints through the Financial Ombudsman Service.

We can assist in:

  • Issuing legal proceedings & drafting documents/pleadings to support the mis-selling claim;
  • Assisting you in preparation of evidence to support your mis-sold SIPP case;
  • Appointing experts or financial accountants to assess losses and ensure the best chance of success in litigation;
  • Liaising with the pension provider/financial adviser and the Court and/or the Financial Ombudsmen Service; and
  • Providing Court representation and advocacy.

Contact our specialist lawyers for a consultation: ☎ 020 7183 0529