FSCS considering payouts over Sipp at centre of SFO probe

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme is considering paying compensation to clients of HD Administrators in relation to the HD self-invested personal pension.

In an update on its website the FSCS says it is currently considering whether it has a “role to play” in making payouts to the firm’s clients. It explains it is currently determining if the firm is liable for investors’ claims, and considering other investigations “including those by the Serious Fraud Office”.

Specialist pensions consultancy and wealth management business Mattioli Woods recently took over administration of the HD Sipp. Executive chairman Bob Woods subsequently told FTAdviser the vast majority of schemes in the Sipp would not be able to recover their funds and that approximately £12m appeared to be “missing” from the Sipp’s books.

According to Mr Woods, a bank statement from a “master” account which should contain money from many member schemes wrongly said the account contained £12m when in fact it contained “closer to £20”.

Of about 300 schemes within HD Sipp, Mr Woods warned 260 may not be able to recover funds.

The SFO last year called on advisers who have clients invested in HD Administrators to come forward with information after it revealed it was working with Nottinghamshire Police and the Financial Services Authority to investigate allegations of fraud in relation to Arck and HD Administrators.

At the time, law firm Regulatory Legal said the case to lead to about £60m in claims.