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Protect your finances during divorce: be aware of pension scams

If you are in the process of divorce it is vital to protect your financial assets.  In the latest in our series of guest blogs we are delighted to feature this timely warning from Taisha Betz of Continuum Wealth.

Scammer activity during COVID-19 lockdown has increased exponentially.  Pensions and investments are a hot area for scammers as people are worried about their investments reducing in value due to market volatility.

If you are in the process of divorce or it is now complete, it is vital that you protect your financial assets, and that includes not talking on social media!  Scammers are scanning social media sites looking for targets, and your posts/comments may not be as private as you think.

Anyone can be a victim, so it is vital that you find trusted sources and do your research before you make any decisions on pensions or investments.

Here are some clear signs of a scam:

  • Unexpected contact via social channels or cold calling – cold calling about pensions is now illegal, so often scammers are contacting via social channels
  • Time pressure – they make you feel like you are going to miss out on an opportunity
  • Investment “guarantee” or unrealistic returns – if it sounds too good to be true don’t do it!
  • Use of flattery
  • Heavy use of social proof/false recommendations that it is a good investment opportunity

What can you do?

  • Take your time, do your research, ask many questions
  • Visit the ScamSmart website where you can check if a firm is authorised or if there is a warning about them.  If you are still not sure, contact the FCA contact centre.
  • If aged 55 or over and considering drawing income from your pension, book a Pension Wise guidance session to fully understand your options.
  • Talk to a financial adviser to make the best decision for your own personal circumstances. Check the firm you are dealing with is authorised by visiting the FCA Register.

Taisha Betz is an independent financial planner at Continuum Wealth Ltd, based in Marlow, Buckinghamshire.  She is always happy to have a discussion, contact her via email or visit Continuum Wealth’s website

Continuum Wealth is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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