Mark Thacker of Fraxson Financial, an unregulated firm with no Part 4a permissions from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), recommended that our client transfer their pension into a self-invested private pension (SIPP) administered by Berkeley Burke. On this advice, our client who had no investment experience transferred a total of £29,420.98 into the SIPP, from five separate pension policies, and £26,650.00 was used to make an investment into Belem Sky Plantation.
Despite our client’s low risk investment appetite, the recommended investment was high risk and resulted in the client paying inflated annual fees that he would not have paid, if his pension remained with its original providers. The client still had over £75,000 left to pay on his mortgage and little to no savings at the time of the advice; he was earning less than £10,000 as a Builder and could therefore could not afford to take any risks with his pension.
The investment failed and the client was unable to recover any of his pension before he contacted High Street Solicitors. Berkeley Burke then entered administration before a claim could be lodged, meaning that the client had to be referred to the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).
The FSCS assessed the claim and found that Berkeley Burke were negligent in accepting such high-risk investments within their portfolio for non-sophisticated investors and failing to conduct their due diligence. An award was made for the sum of £29,050.06 by the FSCS. Our client is now 58 years old and now has some financial security for the future.