Following market feedback and review, Sovereign confirmed that the move includes all Rops products offered from Malta, Gibraltar, the Isle of Man, and the company’s former Rops offerings from Guernsey.
Legacy paperwork will be accepted until 31 January 2017 but the transactional fees that are being removed will not be charged from 1 November.
Sovereign advised that the new simplified fee structure will provide clarity around costs at the point of sale for both advisers and prospective clients.
Ad hoc details
Ad hoc fees relating to requests for pension commencement lump sum and benefit payment changes, whether taken annually, bi-annually, or quarterly, will be removed.
In addition, investment switches, processing dealing instruction, change of nomination beneficiaries, change of adviser, interim valuations and additional contributions, and additional pension transfer charges will now not be chargeable.
Inter-Sovereign pension transfers will remain at a nil charge, but charges will continue to apply to transfers to non-Sovereign schemes.
Gerry Kelly, chief operating officer of Sovereign Group, said: “With over 10,000 [Rops] now under our administration, we are delighted to continue to offer our clients and introducers market leading and competitive products. We recognise the unpopularity of additional above the annual fees we charge and have sought to address this.
“Many providers continue to present opaque and lengthy fee schedules which are difficult to understand; Sovereign has sought to simplify this and add complete clarity to its charging structures.”
Rops fee waivers
Sovereign’s announcement follows the decision by STM Group in April to waive the establishment fee of its Gibraltar and Malta stand-alone Rops.
The company reported a significant increase in new business numbers but a 5% decrease in revenue for the first six months of the year as a direct result of the fee waiver.
STM confirmed in October that it would extend the zero establishment fee for new Rops customers to 31 March 2017, having originally intended to run the offer until 31 October 2016.