Cofunds Qrops Account - Big Problem
8 replies to this topic
Posted 2012-09-19 16:07:52
As a result of the UK RDR, Cofunds introduced a new setting on client accounts (client segment) which is required before a client can trade. Neither I nor my IFA nor Cofunds appears able to set up the appropriate client segment for my account. As a result I have been unable to trade for almost three months. Furthermore, my client account apparently disappeared from the system about a month ago, so I am no longer able to monitor my investments through the Cofunds platform.
Cofunds support has been frankly useless. I have yet to receive from them a proper explanation of what the problem(s) are or in what timescale they will be resolved.
Has anybody else with QROPS investments (or similar) held on the Cofunds platform experienced similar issues? And if so, have they been resolved, and how?
Posted 2012-09-19 16:22:59
Sounds terrible ... Unacceptable not being able to trade for 3 months ... You could have lost a fortune ...
I don't know Cofunds but if I were you i would move my account ..
Posted 2012-09-19 19:31:19
I'm sorry to hear that you've had trouble accessing your account on the platform, if you would like to call our Support Team on 00 44 (0)845 604 4001 and press the Pension option and ask for either Sean Ford or Chris Epsom they will look into the problem for you.
Opening hours are Monday to Friday 0900 to 1700 (UK time).
Hilary Morison (Cofunds)
Posted 2012-09-19 23:05:29
http://www.ftadviser...mI/article.html i dont know if this is relevant , but it seems the platform has issues with clients who were "advised" at some point but who may now seek to transact directly themselves. ie the issue could be about whether or not they should they be paying commision to your original ifa on updates you want make to your investments directly yourself. It seems they want to (need to) classify you as one or the other ie advised or non advised. If you are not now using your ifa for investment advice, maybe best to make sure you are classed, from now on, as non-advised, as you will likely get a better deal, with no commision (from your investment ) going back to the ifa.
Even after RDR an ifa can still claim commision from what are defined as "legacy" accounts, those which were set-up pre-RDR. IMO , (FWTIW) it is well worth knowing whether or not your fund is being treated as a legacy account and considering if that should still be the case.
Edited by wordchild, 2012-09-19 23:31:20.
Posted 2012-09-20 07:07:02
Thanks, wordchild, for the link. It doesn't exactly describe my situation, but does show that Cofunds hasn't put a lot of thought into the design of its system for client segmentation.
My problem is that I appear on their system as an IFA with a single client (myself). My actual IFA doesn't have access to the IFA account, so can't set up the segment for me. I can't do it myself - don't have the appropriate level of system access. And Cofunds can't (or won't) do it. That doesn't explain, however, why my client account has disappeared.
Cofunds (Business Support) has been looking into my problem for three months now - and the problem was long ago escalated to the complaints department.
My last communication from Cofunds (late last month) included the discouraging line:
"In the event that we are unable to resolve this matter by 28 September 2012 we will write to you again detailing the options available to you at that time."
Does anyone know whether there is a way of escalating problems above the regular Complaints Team at Cofunds?
Posted 2012-09-20 08:40:33
Time to complain to a regulator. Call the FSA and find out whether it is the relevant regulator. They are not handling your complaint appropriately if they are blocking you from trading while sorting it out.
Alternatively e-mail a letter to one of the big financial magazines like Investors Chronicle, Money Observer or Money Which. Your complaint sounds interesting and relevant enough to their readers that they might want to run it, in which case they will investigate, which tends to make the suppliers jump! Not sure whether they accept letters from non-subscribers, but worth investigating.
On the face of it you should be receiving compensation, though we only see your side of the story here of course.
Posted 2012-09-21 09:52:06
It's funny what a little bit of publicity will do - even if it's here on Thaivisa. Suddenly I get my reply. Unfortunately, it's not the sort of reply I was hoping for. Cofunds has suddenly decided that I should never have had trading access to my pension account (even though they were fully informed when the account was set up as to its nature and purpose, and it was they that recommended the "IFA with a single client" setup on their platform).
I'm now left with either making requests via my IFA who will then have to forward them to Cofunds by letter (and, of course, the IFA is most unlikely to do this for free), or changing custodian, which will costs me thousands. Let's just say that I'm not very happy at the moment.
Posted 2012-09-26 11:40:31
I don't know Cofunds I transferred my QROPS last year and have a platform with TAM and that's excellent. I can access it via their website 24/7 or that of the IFA's and I always get an answer
within 24 hours of asking the question, so I can imagine how frustrating your situation must have been.
My IFA is based in Pattaya and is a good guy who won't charge you a penny if you just want a second opinion.
Let me know if you would like his number and I'll pass it on to you.
Posted 2012-09-27 06:12:22
If your QROPS is based in Malta it might be because Malta regulations don't allow members to self direct their investments.
As an IFA, if my client was in your situation I would open a new account with cofunds or whoever you prefer. Make sure you have access, then re-register the assets you hold in the current account to the new account. Normally there is no charge for this.
Well done to Cofunds for picking up on this post
I also agree with the other user, TAM are good. I have a few accounts with them.
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