Court backs pensions review plan

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The Independent Online
The High Court yesterday backed the Personal Investment Authority's programme requiring members to review past business to identify clients who were mis-sold personal pension plans. A London firm of independent financial advisers, Lucas Fettes & Partners, applied for leave to seek judicial review, arguing that the regulatory body's policy was irrational and unlawful.

Rejecting the challenge, Mr Justice Buxton said the case arose against a background of "a serious crisis of confidence" in the pensions industry caused by the mis-selling of personal plans.

Stuart Willey, head of PIA legal services, said: "This decision puts beyond doubt the lawfulness and reasonableness of the programme. We hope the decision will remove any lingering doubt there may have been and all members will now co-operate."

Nearly eight million personal pensions have been sold since April 1988, the period from when the review must start. The pensions industry is estimated to face a compensation bill of pounds 3bn.