Covid-19

We will be keeping this page updated regularly as guidelines are put in place to deal with Covid-19. Please visit this page in the first instance should you have any queries that could potentially result due to any Government restrictions.

6 October 2020

We know that many people are concerned about the impact of coronavirus. Like most businesses IPM are monitoring Government advice closely, with the well-being of our team and clients of the utmost importance to us.

We want to assure advisers, clients and our professional connections that we have plans in place to ensure the continuity of our service despite what restrictions may be introduced by the Government. From 13 July our office re-opened and our team members will be coming back on a rotational basis, ensuring that guidelines to operate our workplace safely are followed. For the days that a member of staff is not in the office, they will continue to work from home. Please feel free to contact us via email in the usual way, our staff list will help you should you wish to contact someone directly. If you are unsure as to who you need to liaise with, please email info@ipm-pensions.co.uk 

Our switchboard is also open, however please bear with us as we will we have significantly reduced staff members in the office available to answer the phone. Where possible we would ask that you email the person you wish to speak with your contact number and they will get back to you as soon as they can. If you are unsure as to who you need to speak to please email alison.jarvis@ipm-pensions.co.uk with your query, Alison will ensure that a member of the team gets in touch with you as soon as possible.

The last few months have been challenging for everybody. However, we are proud as to how our team has been able to adapt in these circumstances, ensuring that IPM was able to continue to support our advisers and clients. We would like to thank advisers, clients and our other professional connections for their patience and co-operation during this period.

Taking Benefits 

In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, you may be thinking about your pension and whether you need to make any change to your plans regarding the SIPP which you have with IPM – in particular, if you are aged 55 or over, whether now is the time to either access your pension savings for the first time or take additional income from your SIPP if you have already begun drawing down funds. For any client considering taking benefits from their SIPP during this time, please read the information on this page before making any decisions.

Income Drawdown Payments

Provided that all our usual requirements have been met and there is sufficient monies in the trustee bank account, any clients due to receive an income payment in October can expect this to be cleared in their bank account in line with our usual payment dates. For those clients who elected to received their payslips via post, we will be unable to send these out for October. These will follow in due course, or alternatively if you would like one sent to you via email please get in touch with us.

If you were expecting an income payment and this has not been received, please email info@ipm-pensions.co.uk and we will look into this for you as soon as possible.

SIPPs with Commercial Property

We have received a number of queries in relation to SIPPs that hold commercial property. We thought it be useful to detail some of common issues that have been raised and how IPM is dealing with these.

Rent Holidays

These are testing times for many businesses in the UK, and throughout the world.  We fully appreciate that with so many people staying indoors for various reasons, many firms are experiencing significant downturns in trade and unfortunately it seems the situation may worsen over the coming weeks and months.

As both a pension trustee, and a commercial landlord, we have an obligation to act in the best interests of our client’s pension schemes at all times and usually this would involve actively pursuing the recovery of all rent arrears.  However, given the current circumstances we fully accept that some leeway will need to be given to struggling tenants.

Therefore moving forward and until further notice, for any tenancies to unconnected third parties which fall into arrears, we will allow scheme members to agree a rent free/reduced period, if they feel this is appropriate.  An unconnected third party, is any person/business which is not connected to the scheme member; by either family relation, or through business (fellow directors or business partners).

In the case of connected tenancies, because of HMRC tax consequences we cannot offer quite the same leeway, however we would still recommend that any tenants who are struggling to make their rental payments, contact us as soon as possible with a detailed letter/email, explaining the effect the Coronavirus has had on their finances and ability to trade moving forward.  We will then consider the position and help if we are able to.

Rates

Many of you will have seen in the news, that the government have already introduced measures to mitigate the impact business rates are having on firms which are already struggling.  This is obviously a major national issue, and therefore our advice for all of our tenants can only be to contact their local council and check if any rates relief is available to them.

Mortgages

With many of our tenants struggling to cover their rental charge, it is unfortunately inevitable that certain pension schemes will in turn be unable to make their regular loan repayments.  The government of course recognises that this is a huge national problem, and again you will probably have seen in the news that all major mortgage lenders have agreed to help borrowers who are struggling with the effects of COVID19; this help includes the possibility of a three month repayment holiday.  Therefore, if you believe you are likely to require some help to cover your SIPP’s mortgage liabilities and would like to request some form of payment holiday, please let us know and we will contact the lender to get the ball rolling.

 

Get in touch

Whether it’s a question about a specific client or SIPPs in general, we are here to help. Call us on 01438 747 151, email info@ipm-pensions.co.uk or complete the form below: