Examination of Witnesses

Part of Pension Schemes Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 9:30 am on 21st October 2014.

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David Geale: I think that at the moment, it is fair to say there is not a lot in the middle, but there is something there. There are firms who will give advice on a more focused set of needs for a reasonable cost, so that advice is available, but it is not widely used, I would suggest, either by firms or by people seeking advice. We have put out a consultation on some guidance aimed at helping firms to understand what they can do between execution only and full advice, because there are a whole range of options open to something more limited and more focused—so actually enabling firms to give something more cost-effective, in terms of people saying, “I just want to have a discussion about how to spend my pension pot.” There are a number of firms and trade or professional bodies interested in looking at this sort of advice—there are suggestions, for example, of fixed-fee advice purely on your decumulation options. “Watch this space” would be my take. We are doing what we can to help firms understand the options available to them and we will be finalising our guidance on that very shortly.