FCA confirms Finalised Guidance for advising on Defined Benefit transfers

We have today confirmed our finalised Defined Benefit (DB) transfer guidance for advisers. 

The Finalised Guidance on advising on DB transfers, confirms Draft Guidance published in June 2020. There are some amendments and additions to the Draft Guidance, however we are proceeding with the Guidance largely as consulted. 

It remains our view that it is in the best interest of most consumers to stay in their DB pension. Where an individual seeks advice to transfer, we expect firms to give advice that is suitable and appropriate for their needs and situation. The Finalised Guidance will help firms to identify any weaknesses in their existing processes so that they can put into place an appropriate framework for managing and delivering suitable advice.

The FCA and The Pensions Regulator (TPR) have also published a Guide for Employers and Trustees. This sets out what employers and trustees can do to help members with financial matters, without needing to be authorised by the FCA, including examples to illustrate what they can and can’t do.

The publications are part of our ongoing focus on Defined Benefit pension transfer advice. We are also taking significant supervisory and enforcement action where firms have not met the standards of advice and behaviour expected when giving DB transfer advice.

This is a key part of our work to reduce harm in the consumer investments market, which we identified as a priority over the next 3 years in the 2020/21 Business Plan.