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Pension scams

The Pensions Regulator, Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) are warning against pension offers that claim to be able to provide loans or release tax free cash from your pension fund before you reach age 55.

The authorities have recently detected an increase in bogus schemes and are urging people not to be taken in by website promotions, cold calls or adverts encouraging you to transfer existing pension rights to a new arrangement in order to access a cash payment or loan. Such schemes usually work by transferring your pension fund into risky or opaque investment structures, often based overseas, with no guarantee that you'll get your money back if something goes wrong.

The benefits payable to you on retirement or to your dependants could be reduced if you take up any form of pension scam offer. By accessing pension savings earlier than the law permits, you’re likely to be poorer in retirement and could face substantial tax charges. As ever, if the offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is!

New regulations allow the Trustee to stop a transfer proceeding if they believe it to be a scam.

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