Treasury consults on pension cold calling ban

Treasury is consulting on a proposed ban on cold calling in relation to pensions. The consultation is a technical consultation on the wording of the legislation necessary to implement the ban, as the policy decision has already been taken following earlier consultation. The consultation period lasts only until 17 August, and Treasury hopes to lay the regulations in the Autumn.

The power to ban cold calls comes from the Financial Guidance and Claims Act 2018.

The new regulations would ban pensions cold calling except where the recipient has specifically consented to receiving marketing calls on pensions from the organisation making the call or has an existing client relationship with the caller such that the recipient would envisage receiving such calls. Respondents to the consultation wanted to ensure that legitimate calls, such as those following referrals, from administrators and those attempting to locate “gone-aways” should still be permitted. Treasury noted that such calls are not marketing activities so there was never any intention that they should be captured by the ban. The type of activities the ban should cover include those offering to assess the performance of funds, offering free reviews, or inducing the recipient to release funds early, or transfer them etc.

Treasury also wants to ensure consistency with the PECR in relation to electronic communications.

Treasury seeks views on whether its draft meets the policy objectives.