SimplyBiz Group has appointed Eadon & Co to its pension transfer referral panel, which carries out defined benefit transfers for advisers who do not operate in the market.
The firm is led by Tim Eadon, previously the chief executive officer of the Personal Finance Society and a G60 examiner with the Chartered Insurance Institute.
Eadon & Co is a fairly new entrant to the DB transfer specialist market, only becoming FCA authorised last year.
SimplyBiz’s service allows advisers who are either unable to, or choose not to, operate in the DB transfer market to refer their clients to the third-party service.
Gary Kershaw, compliance director of the SimplyBiz Group, said: “For a variety of reasons, an increasing number of firms are ceasing to write business in this market, however, the demand for our bureau services has seen a dramatic rise in recent months.
“We therefore have moved quickly to ensure we had adequate capacity in the bureau to meet the needs of our members and their clients.
“Eadon & Co have passed our extensive due diligence process and I’m delighted to welcome them to the panel.”
Mr Eadon added: “We are very excited about joining the SimplyBiz Group panel. Our proposition is well placed to support their advisers and we are looking forward to establishing some long term relationships.”
The DB transfer referral panel is part of the wider SimplyRefer solution, which also includes estate planning, will-writing, later life lending, care funding advice, protection, PMI and secured loan referral services.
The current state of DB transfers
The coronavirus crisis has hit the DB transfer market in more ways than one.
First, the number of transfers has dropped as more savers choose to stay put due to market volatility and the risk of making the wrong decision.
Secondly, The Pensions Regulator has allowed trustees to postpone any transfers for three months to give them time to thoroughly check any transfers before agreeing to them.
This is also designed to help prevent savers being targeted by scammers or making poor financial planning decisions in response to the crisis.
The Personal Finance Society expects “a significant number” of advisers to pull out of the DB transfer market due to rising professional indemnity insurance costs as well as the effects of the coronavirus lockdown.
Keith Richards, chief executive officer of the PFS and chairman of the Pension Advice Taskforce, said: “The hardening of the PII market, and the prohibitive cost this has imposed on advisers, has meant some members dropped their permissions to advise on defined benefit pension transfers and come off the gold standard register.
“Undoubtedly, the coronavirus will have a further impact on advice businesses and access, meaning that further government attention needs to be given to pension freedom legislation.
“The significant falls in equity values make it both more expensive for trustees to fund transfers and more challenging for consumers to invest transferred funds – these factors are likely to significantly reduce demand for both advice and transfers.”