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IFA failed to pay FOS compensation

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The Financial services Compensations Scheme have  upheld 25 cases against Wellington Court Financial Services after it was discovered the firm gave unsuitable pension transfer advice.

On Wednesday 22nd June 2022, the FSCS said it intended to work with the FCA and the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) to investigate the activities of Wellington Court, which has also failed to pay awards resulting from complaints upheld by the FOS between March 2021 and March 2022.

The main concern related to advice to invest in a self-invested personal pension (SIPP) administered by Guinness Mahon Trust Corporation and the assets therein, which was declared in default by the FSCS in October 2020.

The firm received FCA authorisation to advise on pension transfers in the UK in 2016. Prior to this, it only had permission to carry out insurance mediation and insurance distribution activities. It’s status was relatively short lived as in October 2020, the FCA issued a restriction for the firm to cease pension transfer advice. 

The FSCS did not disclose the number of claims made so far against Wellington Court. It is unable to pay compensation to those whose complaints have been upheld but have not received their award because the firm has not been declared in default.

What is a mis-sold SIPP? A SIPP is an acronym for Self-Invested Personal Pension, a legitimate pension saving vehicle where the client, following advice, invests their savings (typically pension transfer money) into assets or investments which should allow savers some direction on where and what their pension assets consist of. The issue identified by the FCA is that this process has been open to mis selling with some advisers recommending unregulated or high-risk investments as the appropriate assets the SIPP should hold. Invariably these assets lose significant, if not all of it’s original value and this then opens the advice process to criticism and potential claim.

If you think you have been a victim of a mis-sold SIPP please get in touch today. You can call 0800 046 9976 or email