One of our tax and investigation partners, Stuart Brothers, was instructed by a SIPP (self-invested personal pension) operator to help defend their case when a claim was brought against them and a trustee.
A group of individuals said the operator had breached their duty of care to third parties after losses arising from investments in alternative assets.
A claim was made under section 27 of the Financial Services and Markets Act, which was then passed to the FCA who threatened to intervene. Had that happened, the operator could have been fined and faced considerable adverse publicity. Central to the claim was investigating the proper scope of a SIPP operator in relation to their duties with regards to due diligence on non-alternative assets to third parties.
Stuart advised the SIPP provider on how to maintain good communications and orderly relations with the FCA. He also liaised with the solicitors acting for the indemnity insurers and advised on the scope that regulated bodies have with regards to duties to third parties.
Thanks to Stuart’s experience as a solicitor and his knowledge of both the financial sector and the FCA, the litigation was resolved on a consensual basis. This also resulted in the FCA adopting a more benign stance towards the SIPP operator.
Regarding the case, Stuart said; “This was a fascinating case which had many legal and regulatory dimensions. This was particularly due to the discussions around the breadth of the SIPP operator’s duties towards third parties.”