Consumer brings complaint after a business mistakenly transfers her pension funds

Distress and inconvenience Up to £300 Pensions

Carol contacted us after a business had mistakenly transferred her pension funds. 

What happened 

Carol held pension funds with a number of different businesses. She contacted a business to ask them for advice about her existing pension arrangements, and the potential to make withdrawals. Following this meeting, the business mistakenly arranged for Carol’s pension funds to be transferred to them, away from her existing providers. This wasn’t what Carol had asked them to do, and she wasn’t made aware that they were doing this.

When she realised what the business had done, Carol contacted them straight away. They acknowledged their mistake and apologised. They arranged for the funds to be transferred back to Carol’s original pension providers and made sure the funds hadn’t lost any value in that time, due to their mistake.

The business offered Carol £200 compensation for the worry she’d experienced. Carol didn’t accept this as she felt this was a significant error which had put her future at risk.

What we said

We recognised that it had been upsetting for Carol to find out her pensions had been transferred without her knowledge or consent. She will have been distressed that her pensions weren’t where she expected, and that the business had acted without her authority.

We factored in that the business were very apologetic about the error and took steps to put it right as quickly as they could. The pensions were back with their original providers within a month of Carol flagging the error. But we still thought it was fair for the business to pay Carol compensation for the worry she’d been caused during that time. On that basis we agreed the offer of £200 was fair.