Pension complaints have increased by almost one third in the last financial year according to the Pe...
Pension complaints have increased by almost one third in the last financial year according to the Pensions Ombudsman's Annual Report, rising to 3,891 against 2,946 in the previous year.
Pensions Ombudsman David Laverick attributed the level of complaints, the highest since the office was established in 1990, to the widespread media coverage of pensions issues over the year.
He said the office had been unable to keep up with the inflow of complaints and his resources are likely to become even more stretched during the current financial year, when follow-up work from complaints received last year takes up more time.
He added, however, the past 12 months has been calmer in terms of his involvement with courts, with fewer appeals to the High Court against his decisions than his predecessor had experienced before Laverick took the post in September 2001.
Laverick said there was a need for better security of occupational pension schemes and simplification of the rules governing who can make complaints to the ombudsman and how they should be dealt with.
He also added it would be advantageous to replace the large number of individually designed pension schemes with a small number of model schemes and suggested death benefits should be distributed in accordance with the wishes of pension scheme member s rather than at the discretion of scheme trustees.
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