He said: “The concept of ‘independence’ is not high on the agenda and most advisers talked of advisers as gateways to getting their hands on their money.
“There was little awareness of the contracts that members were entering into with advisers or people’s rights to move away from advisers and cancel the advisory agreements they were signing.”
According to Alistair Cunningham, financial planning director at Surrey-based Wingate Financial Planning, “it is hugely concerning that a significant proportion of these employees will either make a decision on their gut, or by taking inadequate advice”.
He said: “A firm such as ours does not have any ability to offer advice, so we need to rely on the good faith of others.
“Whilst no guarantee, I would highlight to members that a chartered firm adheres to a higher level of qualifications and ethical standards.”