Insurance giant ReAssure has apologised for the administrative chaos endured by Legal & General customers after it took over L&G’s insurance-based savings, pensions, life and with-profits business late last year.
Customers were wrongly informed that they faced higher annual charges on their pensions – and in some cases letters were sent to the nominated beneficiaries of policies rather than the policyholders.
ReAssure, a so-called industry ‘consolidator’, has confirmed to The Mail on Sunday that it will not charge any of L&G’s million customers more for their policy to be managed by the company.
Chaos: Customers were wrongly informed that they faced higher annual charges on their pensions
It said: ‘Despite significantly scaling up resources to account for the additional L&G customers, contact rates following the migration have exceeded projections. So it has taken us longer than usual to deal with some customers’ queries. We recognise this will have been frustrating for customers and apologise.’
A cartoon video on ReAssure’s website explains that it takes over policies where businesses have grown too big to manage them efficiently, leading to poor customer service. Yet policyholders who have tried to contact ReAssure are told to expect 30-minute waits on the phone – and have faced monthlong delays in written responses.
One customer who had his personal pension with L&G on which he paid tiered annual charges of between 0.4 and 0.6 per cent was told the new charges would be between 0.8 per cent and 1 per cent.
This would mean paying £1,275 a year rather than £675. Only when he raised his query to a formal complaint did he receive a letter saying the original fees would still apply.
ReAssure said: ‘We have not increased charges on any former L&G products as part of the transfer. Most Legal & General customers also now have access to our low-cost fund range.’