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Aviva platform clients face race against the clock

Aviva platform clients face race against the clock

Clients of the Aviva platform face a race against the clock to perform tax planning as the platform is once again months behind in sending out tax statements.

The statements contain details of a client’s income and assets. The statement is then passed to the client, who needs it to help compile their tax return. The information is also useful for tax planning. 

Minesh Patel, an adviser at EA Financial Solutions in London and a client of the Aviva platform, said other platforms he uses typically send the statements in May, but Aviva told him it will be next week before the statements are available.

The self assessment tax deadline is January 31. 

Advisers on the Aviva platform faced the same issue in 2018, and didn’t receive the statements until November.

Aviva confirmed the issue to FTAdviser and the expectation that the statements will be sent out next week. They have been approached to comment further. 

Advisers who use the Aviva platform were unable to do any work on Tuesday as the service was completely out of action for around 24 hours.

They were unable to access valuations, quotes or illustrations for a period of time yesterday due to what Aviva called an internal issue.

The problems are the latest in a long line of such issues for Aviva platform clients, particularly in the first half of 2018, as the company replatformed. Clients were unable to use the platform for six days in January 2018. 

Of the latest outage, an Aviva representative said: “We apologise to any of our customers and advisers affected by some IT system issues we experienced yesterday. We have now resolved these issues.”

Mr Patel said: “This outage is the first one like that for a while. We were unable to do any of the tasks we needed to do.”

His initial reaction to the strife he experienced on the platform last year was to stop placing new clients on the Aviva platform.

But he told FTAdviser the Aviva platform fee was so compelling he has begun to use it again.

He said: “We did a very broad comparison, particularly for pension cases, and found that Aviva’s platform costs are among the cheapest.

"In this cost sensitive environment I am allocating more cash to them. It’s a balance between cost and the service issues.” 

david.thorpe@ft.com