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Montpellier

Montpelier Pension Administration Services (MPAS)

If you are one of the many pension holders to have lost money as a result of investing your pension via Montpelier Pension Administration Services (MPAS or Montpelier), you may be entitled to compensation. 

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) has upheld score of claims from pension holders against this firm and our team of experts at Beat the Banks can help you fight your case against them too.

The perfect example of a badly run SIPP

First established in February 2006, Montpelier started to write the script of their own downfall in 2009 with the appointment of Kevin Wells as Managing Director and Graeham Sampson as Finance Director. This was the catalyst for what Tracey McDermott, then director of the Enforcement and Financial Crime Division at the Finacial Conduct Authority (FCA), described as a perfect example of “how not to run a SIPP.”

Following Mr Wells’ and Mr Sampson’s appointment, they threw the doors of the business open to a host of complex, esoteric and unregulated investments including life settlement funds, overseas property, hotel rooms and unlisted shares. Sadly, many of these ended in disaster for investors.

The FSA’s final notice in 2013 was scathing. It determined that less than two years after Wells and Sampson took over at MPAS, 40% of its pension funds were invested in non-standard investments, with a third of that figure alone being in hotel room investments. 

Wells had completely failed to vet and monitor IFA’s and fund managers and lacked the appropriate level of knowledge to truly assess the assets the firm administered for pension holders. He would have been hit with a £58,500 fine along with his ban, if not for the fact he was able to show the penalty would cause him serious financial hardship. 

A year prior to this Sampson had also been handed a fined of £17,850 by the financial regulator for failing to understand or ensure MPAS was meeting its regulatory capital requirements. 

These revelations will come as no real surprise to SIPP holders at MPAS. A SIPP  thematic review conducted by the FAS in October 2010, identified numerous regulatory failings at MPAS. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the firm chose to sell out to Curtis Banks in May 2011, citing unnamed issues surrounding the “nature and complexity of some of the investments.”

In January 2018 Montpellier Pension Administration Services along with Brooklands and Stadia Trustees Limited, were officially declared in default by the FSCS. The combined claims against the three firms were reported as being in the region of 150, with significantly more expected in the near future.

If you were unfortunate enough to get caught up in the Montpellier Pension Administration Services SIPP scandal, you may be entitled to compensation. The team at Beat the Banks can assess your claim and help you fight for the money you deserve. Call us on 01382 200474 for a free, no-obligation chat about your case.

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