Our market-leading specialist pension products team advises on all aspects of the SIPP, SSAS, EFRBS, QROPS and other types of pension scheme.
Led by Head of SIPP and SSAS, Jade Murray, a nationally recognised expert in this area, the team includes dedicated lawyers from our pensions, financial regulation, tax, real estate, corporate, commercial, trusts, data protection and IP specialisms.
Who we act for
Addleshaw Goddard represents a large number of UK and overseas pension providers, trustees, operators, banks, fund managers, platform providers, wealth managers, insurers, independent financial advisers and pension consolidators.
- How we can help
1. Setting up new SIPPs, SSASs & QROPSs
AG helps design and establish new pension schemes and specialist pension products. This includes advice and assistance with formal legal documents; client and marketing literature; the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) application process for new SIPP operators; HMRC requirements; and training on operational and regulatory compliance. We also work jointly and cost-effectively with specialist compliance consultants.
2. Legal compliance and governance
The team provides the full range of legal advice on all aspects of pension product operation, including FCA/TPR compliance; trust and fiduciary duties; governance; pension taxation; outsourcing and third party service provider arrangements; and scheme changes.
3. Buying or selling a pensions business
Careful due diligence of any prospective acquisition is more important than ever for buyers. The continued impact of the low interest environment, increased competition, the Retail Distribution Review and a more interventionist approach from the FCA, TPR and ombudsmen are just some of the threats to the longevity of SIPPs and other pension providers' business models. Equally, sellers will need to anticipate due diligence findings and take steps to ensure any issues are mitigated as far as possible.
We have a long history of acting for both buyers and sellers of all kinds of pensions-related businesses, including SIPP and SSAS providers and portfolios; pensions consultancies; financial advisers; and platform and wealth managers. AG also regularly advises on the treatment of SSASs following the disposal or restructure of businesses with that scheme in place. We ensure that you negotiate the best possible outcome through a focused and efficient due diligence or sale process.
4. Pensions disputes
We advise on all kinds of contentious pensions matters, including court claims, ombudsman and member complaints and regulatory investigations. The team has particular expertise advising on claims against SIPP/SSAS trustees and operators regarding member investments (court and ombudsman); resolving disputes amongst SSAS trustee members; challenging HMRC decisions; and helping with FCA s.166 processes and other regulatory interventions.
5. Making investments 'SIPPable'
SIPPs and SSASs provide a good source of capital funding for quality investment propositions. We advise on how to make your investment proposition acceptable to SIPP and SSAS providers.
6. Going digital
The 2015 pensions freedoms have revolutionised DC pensions and retirement. Innovation, technology and the ability to provide a 'digital consumer experience' for pensions and other forms of investment product is one of the key challenges for pensions and investment providers. Our specialist digital and payments teams help overcome the various legal and regulatory challenges of turning the humble pension into an effective and compliant digital proposition.
- Professional memberships
We are a long-standing member of the Association of Member-Directed Pension Schemes and Jade Murray is a regular speaker at its technical and annual conferences and other SIPP and SSAS industry events.
Other AG memberships include:
- The Society of Pensions Professionals
- The Association of Pension Lawyers
- The Association of Professional Pension Trustees