Op CHIVE information for steelworkers – Dec 11th and 12th.
I am the adviser who whistle blew the Celtic Wealth/Active Wealth (UK) pension transfer (alleged!) shenanigans. I didn’t do it with any sense of happiness – it is the latest in a long line of festering self inflicted financial services injuries.
I chatted with one gentleman in Trostre just this evening who was told that Royal London could go pop, so somewhere like Vega Algorithms would be more suitable. Royal London was founded as a Friendly Society in a London coffee shop in 1861, and Vega Algorithms was founded in 2017. Go figure. That’s pretty irrelevant now. The Regulator, the FCA, has suspended one particular adviser’s permissions to directly do pension transfer work, pending an investigation and case review.
The bottom line is this. A lot of steelworkers and their families are worried. And unsurprisingly. But the message that we want to put out is this. Not all Independent Financial Advisers are the same, and many of you will have had great service. But when the scale of this mayhem became apparent, I put a call out to my colleagues to offer pro bono counselling services to BSPS members, and have been amazed at the response.
CHIVE stands for Counselling, Help, Information, Volunteer, Exchange and I have set it up to roll out one-to-one counselling sessions at Port Talbot, York, Llanwern, Corby, Scunthorpe, Doncaster and Shotton. The dates that we’ll run the events are the 11th and 12th of December and we aim to man counselling desks from 1000 in the morning, until 8.00 at night. So, hopefully, we’ll catch all shift and day workers that way.
If you want to come long, I’ve set up an online booking service. Just look for the venue that you want, pick a subject that most closely matches you, a date (11th or 12th December) and a time (the slots are sixty minutes), enter your contact details and just click to confirm. You’ll instantly receive an email by way of confirmation.
Your session will last 60 minutes or so, and won’t offer ‘financial advice’. Instead, you’ll get personalised pension and retirement counselling from some of the best minds in the business. As you book your slot, you can help your counsellor by giving them a ‘heads up’ and clicking on the topic which most applies to you. You are able to choose from;
- I have already transferred out of BSPS and I’m worried.
- I am still working, and I don’t know what decision to make.
- I am retired and I don’t know what decision to make.
- My question is about general financial planning, not BSPS.
- I am sure that I have been miss-sold, how do I complain?
The counsellors are all fully trained specialists and are drawn from across the field of financial planning. You might get a highly qualified para-planner for instance, someone who works with an adviser, looking at various strategies and acting as a sounding-board, a sense-check. In fact, the para planner who I work with is giving up his time to help, too.
The advisers won’t be able to sell you anything and they won’t solicit any services at all (if they do, tell me!), I’ve been quite strict about that.
But, if you form a good impression of him or her, you can ask to take away a business card later if you wish. Although this isn’t about generating business, the fact is, you probably do need financial advice, so I’d rather you got it from some of the best (I know, personally, most of these people). They will all be fully up to speed with BSPS and they will be given in advance, a brief summary of your circumstances. After you book your slot, I’ll send you a link asking you a little about yourself. This will allow your counsellor to make best use of the time that you will have together.
Not all financial practitioners are as bad as we’re made out to be, and we hope this will go some way to making your experience a little less worrying. I have set up a dedicated email address for this – firstname.lastname@example.org, so please use that if you have any questions at all.
So, what are you waiting for? First come, first served. And tell your mates. After you’ve booked, of course. 😉