How to Spot a Pension Scam

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Since the pension freedom reforms came into force in April 2015, over-55s have enjoyed the ability to cash in their company and personal pensions. But this new opportunity has attracted hundreds of scammers trying to trick savers into letting them access those pension pots.

There are steps you can take to protect yourself against fraudsters.

 You should be cautious of anyone that:

  • Approaches you out of the blue over the phone, via text messages or in person at the door and wants to talk about your pension options.
  • Uses phrases such as ‘one-off investment opportunity’, ‘free pension review’, ‘legal loopholes’, ‘cash bonus’ and ‘government endorsement’.
  • Asks you to transfer money overseas.
  • Promises you access to your pension before you reach 55.
  • Doesn’t provide copies of any documentation.
  • Encourages you to speed up the transfer of your money into a new scheme.

If you’re not sure whether a company is legitimate, do some basic checks. Pension cold-calling has been illegal since the start of 2019, meaning you can assume any such approach is fraudulent, unless you previously consented to be contacted by that company.

You should also check the FCA’s register of regulated financial service providers here: If you can’t find the company, or see that they’re being investigated, don’t trust them with your money.

Before you sign anything or transfer any money, it’s best to talk to an independent financial adviser about your pension options- BlackBear Financial Group can help you with this. Contact us on 0151 305 2305.

If you think you’ve been scammed, or contacted by scammers, contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

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