Lawrence said: “I think Mr L had been made aware that his contributions would be held in cash, but I don’t that was suitable advice.
“Because of the length of time it would have taken to build up the capital required to achieve Mr L’s objective of buying the rest of the commercial premises, I think he should have been advised to ‘invest’ the contributions – and rental income, in line with his attitude to risk.”
The firm didn’t accept the decision at first saying that Lawrence had accepted a “hindsight approach” and that Mr L was only ever interested in keeping the funds in cash to ensure there was no loss to the pension fund when it came to buying out the commercial premises.
But then the firm told the Fos that it hadn’t been a separate regulated entity at the time of the advice and had actually been an appointed representative of Caerus until November 2015.
So it said the complaint should be considered against new Caerus owner Quilter instead.
Quilter accepted responsibility for the advice and agreed to pay out.
The Fos said Mr L should be put as closely as possible into the position he would probably now be in if he had been given suitable advice.
Quilter must also pay £250 for the disruption caused to Mr L’s retirement planning.
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