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Guide to pension transfers post-freedoms



    Advisers have, since April 2015 when the pension freedom and choice regime came into force, been attempting to navigate the minefields that are insistent clients, greater powers of trustees to delay transfers, higher specialisms required and greater regulatory permissions.

    Measures put in place to protect members included the so-called guidance guarantee, under which the FCA is required to make rules to require specified pension providers to signpost the guidance service available to members with a right or entitlement to flexible benefits.

    Trustess have greater powers to ensure members have received appropriate independent advice from an authorised adviser, and advisers wanting to conduct pension transfers from defined benefit (DB) to defined contribution (DC) schemes need to jump through more regulatory hurdles.

    This guide covers the unintended consequences of the pension freedoms regime for DB to DC transfers, what the rate cut and Brexit might mean for pension transfers, how there is lack of clarity in some regulatory matters - not least the transfer value analysis calculation - and what advisers need to know about the specialisms required.

    Contributors of information for this guide: Neil MacGillivray, head of technical support at James Hay Partnership; Mike Morrison, head of platform technical at AJ Bell; Peter Bradshaw, national account director for Selectapension; Steven Cameron, pensions director for Aegon; Paul Darlow, actuary foe Xafinity; Carolyn Jones, head of pension product at Fidelity International; Bob Scott, chairman of the Association of Consulting Actuaries; the Financial Conduct Authority; Pension Schemes Act 2015; Prudential; Claire Trott, head of pensions technical for Talbot and Muir; Andrew Pennie, head of pathways for Intelligent Pensions; Martin Tilley, director of technical services for Dentons Pension Management.

    In this guide


    Please answer the six multiple choice questions below in order to bank your CPD. Multiple attempts are available until all questions are correctly answered.

    1. What can trustees do under current legislation?

    2. What is the limit for a DB cash equivalent transfer value before someone has to seek advice?

    3. According to Xafinity, what did the Transfer Value Index reach by the END of July?

    4. What were the values of top 350 firms’ DB accounting deficits in August 2016?

    5. What has Mr Scott of the ACA called on the FCA to do?

    6. The duty to act in the best interests of members under section 37 of the Pensions Schemes Act applies to shared risk or defined contribution schemes - true or false?

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