Many investors were given poor or mis-leading advice when it came to transferring money from their personal pension into a Berkeley Burke SIPP.
As with most mis-sold SIPPs the problem can be with the investments within the SIPP and the advice given to transfer into them.
If investments are high-risk, illiquid or unregulated, then they are generally not suitable for the average investor.
Some of the most notable investments linked with Berkeley Burke SIPPs are:
Mis-sold pension compensation claims have mainly been directed at regulated financial advisers for giving negligent financial advice to their clients.
However, Berkeley Burke have also been subject to some high-profile court cases, which are challenging the right to make claims against SIPP providers.
In 2014 the Financial Ombudsman Scheme (FOS) ruled against them in respect of the Sustainable Agro Energy investment. This was a green biofuel project in Cambodia which subsequently went into receivership after the Serious Fraud Squad got involved!
Berkeley Burke took this decision to court and in 2018 the Judge ruled in favour of the FOS.
However, Berkeley Burke won the right to appeal this decision which was scheduled for October 2019.
This did not go ahead as they decided to withdraw their appeal case due to a lack of funds.
This court case involved a collective of 176 investors who claimed they suffered losses as a result of the high-risk assets within their SIPPs.
The plaintiffs alleged they were sold these SIPPs through 9 different introducer firms and as a result were invested in single high-risk investments ranging from forestry schemes to overseas property.
Berkeley Burke withdrew their defence in this case, in order to focus on the FOS court case proceedings.
In September 2019, Berkeley Burke SIPP Administration Ltd went into administration with Hartley SAS buying the SIPP arm of the business. They are currently in liquidation.
In April 2020 the FSCS determined that Berkeley Burke had failed to conduct adequate due diligence prior to accepting unsuitable investments that were held within their SIPPs.
If you want to know if your Berkeley Burke SIPP may have been mis-sold to you – we can help with our free assessment check.
Whilst each case is individual, as mis-selling specialists we know to look for certain signs that in our experience indicate that mis-selling may have happened.
Our assessment is free and there’s absolutely no obligation to use our service if you have case.
You are not required to use our services to pursue your claim. You can also seek further advice or shop around subject to any time limits within which a claim must be made.
It is possible for you to present the claim for free, either to the firm or person against whom you wish to complain or to the statutory ombudsman (Financial Ombudsman Service or Pension Ombudsman Service) or the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, whichever is applicable to your claim.