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Mis-sold Berkeley Burke SIPP Pension

The SIPP provider at the centre of a high-profile court battle, Berkeley Burke has now fallen into administration, with the SIPP arm sold-off to Hartley Pensions.

Many people were advised (either by a regulated Independent Financial Adviser, or by an unregulated introducer) to transfer their pension into a SIPP: A Self Invested Personal Pension with Berkley Burke.

Like all SIPPs, Berkley Burke SIPPs can hold a wide range of investments, including HIGH-RISK and UNREGULATED investments, which should only be sold to people who either earn enough money to run those risks (Over £100k per year) or people with “Sophisticated Investor” status.

But when people who aren’t High-Net Worth Individuals, or Sophisticated Investors end up in Berkley Burke SIPPs with high-risk investments, it can spell disaster, often leading to pension funds losing tens-of-thousands and devastated retirement plan.

In 2014, the Financial Ombudsman Service found Berkeley Burke had failed to perform sufficient due-diligence in allowing a client to invest in a high-risk investment: Sustainable AgroEnergy.

Berkeley Burke tried to appeal the decision through a Judicial Review, but lost the case on the 30th October 2018, meaning that it may be held accountable if found to have failed with due diligence in other unsuitable SIPP cases.

Now, Berkeley Burke is in administration (a type of insolvency proceeding), and it is known that many people had their pension money placed into investments that have now become illiquid and may be lost.

If you’re invested with Berkeley Burke, then you may be able to make a claim for a mis-sold SIPP.

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High Risk Investments

There are many high-risk investments that have been linked to Berkeley Burke, including but not limited to:

Store First Storage Pods
Ethical Forestry Ltd
Premier Childrens Services

Berkeley Burke Timeline

1973 - Core Company Founded

The original firm Berkeley Burke was formed back in 1973, well before SIPP pensions were around, and was involved in insurance.

2008 - SIPPs

The group created Berkeley Burke SIPP Administration Limited.

2014 - Ombudsman Decision

The FOS decided that Berkeley Burke had failed to perform their due diligence checks on a pension switch and investment via one of their SIPPs. The investment was Sustainable AgroEnergy – a now-notorious high-risk investment story that involved fraud.
Berkeley Burke decided to appeal the decision and the case rolled on and on through the appeals process right through to the high-courts years later.

2019 - Administration

In September 2019, Berkeley Burke fell into administration, apparently because it could “no-longer afford to defend redress claims made against it”.
It also said that the claims related to when Berkeley Burke was accepting high-risk investments between 2010 and 2012.

Berkeley Burke Related Claims

SIPP Claims

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SIPP Providers

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Final Salary

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