We set out final rules to extend asset retention rules for certain firms who provided transfer advice to British Steel Pension Scheme (BSPS) members. We also summarise feedback to CP22/22.
Why we are doing this
This intervention will help ensure that the firms responsible for giving bad BSPS advice meet the cost of the redress liabilities that arise and reduce the risk that the firm fails with costs being passed to Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) levy payers.
Who this affects
- Firms that provided BSPS members with advice to transfer during the period of 26 May 2016 to 29 March 2018 (subject to certain exclusions) and their insurers. This will include firms that are subject to the BSPS consumer redress scheme, plus firms whose BSPS complaints have been referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service or are subject to a past business review (which are not in scope of the consumer redress scheme, but otherwise would have been).
Others may also be interested in this Policy Statement, including:
- industry groups and trade bodies
- individual consumers, particularly BSPS members who transferred their pension, and their representatives
- consumer groups
The extended asset retention rules will apply from 11.59pm on 31 January 2023.
The current temporary asset retention rules (ie as confirmed in PS22/4) continue to apply up to 31 January 2023.
In April 2022, in Policy Statement PS22/4, we introduced a temporary asset retention requirement for certain firms under the (then) proposed BSPS consumer redress scheme. We introduced the temporary rules on an emergency basis, without consultation, because of the risk that firms may dispose of assets ahead of the consumer redress scheme being introduced.
In November 2022, in Policy Statement PS22/14, we confirmed a consumer redress scheme for former BSPS members who transferred out of their pension scheme after being given unsuitable advice to do so. The scheme rules require firms to assess any advice they gave to BSPS members to transfer out between 26 May 2016 and 29 March 2018, and to pay redress if the advice was unsuitable and caused the consumer a loss.
At the same time, we published Consultation Paper CP22/22 which proposed an extension of the temporary asset retention requirement. This extension would mean that the asset retention rules continue to apply until firms have resolved all relevant BSPS cases that are subject to the rules of the BSPS consumer redress scheme (‘scheme cases’) and other relevant BSPS cases outside the scheme ('non-scheme cases'). Policy Statement PS23/1 gives an update on feedback to CP22/22 and sets out our final rules.