Code of Good Practice released for Combating Pension Scams

By April 1, 2015News

Code of Good Practice released for Combating Pension Scams, Concept Group in Guernsey provides support to the UK Industry Group who drafted the Code

The Code of Good Practice for Combating Pension Scams was released on 16th March, following calls from the pensions industry for guidance to help share good practice and to help reduce the risk of scams. An Industry Group in the UK, Chaired by Margaret Snowdon OBE, was formed to develop a Code of Good Practice for use by all in the industry.

Margaret Snowdon, Chairman of Pensions Administration Standards Association (PASA) and Chairman of the Industry Group, said “The Code is a milestone in setting the industry standard due diligence to follow when considering a transfer request. Trustees, providers and administrators want to help prevent scams that can lead to the loss of members’ benefits and have felt caught between the conflicting demands of regulation.  The Code, being based on principles supported by practical guidance should help everyone take reasonable action to protect members and themselves.”

Guernsey headquartered Concept Group has actively engaged over the past twelve months with the UK Industry Group, who wrote the Code of Good Practice for Combating Pension Scams, to provide some unique overseas expertise in regards to the combating pension scams.

Margaret Snowdon added “the fact that so many organisations, including those who advise on SIPPs, SSASs and QROPS willingly gave their help is very encouraging for member protection.  It is also good news that the various regulators welcome the Code and were helpful in the long process to get us to publication.”

The Code has been widely welcomed by organisations such as the Association of Member Directed Pension Schemes, the Department for Work and Pensions, the Financial Conduct Authority, HM Revenue & Customs, the Pensions Advisory Service and the UK Pensions Regulator.

The Code of Good Practice can be viewed here:

Roger Berry, Managing Director of the Concept Group, commented “from the moment we heard about the planned development of a Code of Good Practice for combating pension liberation and other scams, we were extremely supportive and wanted to assist where we could. Priding ourselves on prudence and caution, we are always proactive in efforts to prevent such pension scams. We made contact with Margaret Snowdon, Chairman of the Industry Group, and offered our assistance in the review process, to provide some expert insight from an overseas provider of bona fide non-UK pension arrangements. This was gratefully accepted and over the course of the past twelve months, we have provided input into various drafts of the Code and we also fully support the principles of the Code.”

Roger Berry added that “to be included as one of the organisations involved in the development of this Code is something we are extremely proud of, when you see the calibre of organisations involved and the widespread support from relevant industry organisations. We were delighted to be consulted in the development stages and will continue our close association with the Industry Group.  We hope it will also help to demonstrate our continued effort and stance towards combating pension scams, both in the UK and internationally. ”

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