It just gets from bad to worse. Chancellor Osborne introduced the principle of unfettered transfer or right to cash in pension pots. This was a recipe for disaster and as predicted every snake in the grass and unprincipled carpet bagger has now woken up to the vast sums of money that can be made from legally plundering pension savings. The latest wheeze is Tupperware style pension parties.
Remember Tupperware? You couldn’t buy it in the shops. Crafty old Dart Industries of Florida who made the stuff. They didn’t want to sell it into conventional retail outlets that would want to keep half the price to pay for staff, premises, etc. So they recruited housewives and persuaded them to hold parties with their friends and families where they could look at samples and take orders for Tupperware. And Tupperware was only over-priced plastic containers to store left over food in your fridge or freezer.
So now the pension sharks are recruiting householders to host pension parties to explain all the benefits of cashing in your work pension pot and investing in whatever else. And just to make everything all so easy for the guests, lo and behold an independent financial adviser is in attendance to help fill in the forms and relieve you of your hard-earned pension.
The hosts get £100 for arranging each party, and the “independent” financial advisor get’s a healthy cut from any cash he has extracted from the unwitting guests. So they cash in the whole lot, and find themselves faced with a whopping great bill from the Inland Revenue because over a certain limit it’s no longer tax free and the excess gets taxed as part of your current year’s income.
Worse than that of course is what happens to the money once it has been unshackled from an existing pension scheme. In the worst cases the money is channelled into high risk schemes and the the pensioner ends up with nothing. By then of course the financial advisor is long gone.
This scandal was recently front-paged in the national press. Was there any reaction from the government that introduced this iniquitous legislation in the first place? Not a word. And yet it was our naive and careless parliamentarians who paved the way for these abuses with thoughtless and dangerous legislation. You couldn’t make it up.