Strategic Wealth UK Ltd
Established in June 2008, Strategic Wealth UK Ltd, who also traded under the name Gibro Wealth, was a pension advice firm based in Deeside, Wales. Working alongside offshore partners in Gibraltar, they provided QROPS pension advice and offshore lifetime annuities to UK pension holders. They also ran with an appointed representative firm called Synergy Wealth.
The firm entered creditors voluntary liquidation on 21 December 2017 before being finally declared as being in default by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) at the end of April 2018.
Notice from the FCA
Strategic Wealth’s demise began in June 2017 when the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) served the company with a Section 166 Notice, prohibiting the firm from providing advice in relation to any underlying investments, whether these be regulated or not. In other words, they had to cease all pension related business.
The firm was also hit with an asset restriction order forbidding them to dispose of, or in any way diminish the value of its assets without the FCA’s prior approval. These restrictions were to remain in place until the regulator was fully satisfied that an independent expert had put in place a compliant business model with robust systems and controls.
Bending the rules
The rules surrounding QROPS are very strict – they are only permitted for UK citizens who have built up a pension fund in the UK and who have left the country with the full intention of retiring abroad. A fact that has been hidden from pension holders by less scrupulous IFAs and scammers.
Unfortunately, while Gibraltar and Malta are both EEA countries, taking any pension away from UK shores means leaving one of the most regulated financial markets in the world, bringing obvious risks.
If you were given pension advice by Strategic Wealth or an associated company, your money could have been put at risk without your knowledge. Our team at Beat the Banks can assess your case, establish if you have been given faulty advice and give you honest, reliable guidance as to your next steps. Call us on 0800 193 1234 for a no-obligation consultation with one of our claims experts.