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Which providers are RDR ready? All you need to know

With the retail distribution review just around the corner we turn our attention to which providers have got themselves into shape for the 31 December. Not every life company out there has unveiled its adviser charging proposition for 2013 onwards. For those that have we run down which products will facilitate the adviser charging and which will be quietly closed and when.

AXA Wealth

AXA Wealth is set to offer adviser charging across its entire product range from 31 December.

The company will facilitate adviser charging for initial, spread initial, ongoing and ad hoc fees that can be a specific monetary amount or a percentage of premium.

Adviser charging will be available on its retirement range including the Elevate Pension Investment account, Family Suntrust, Retirement Wealth account and its Secure Advantage product.

For onshore savings and investments, adviser charging will be facilitated on the Elevate General Investment account, Elevate ISA and AXA Wealth Investment Bond.

International savings and investments will also be adviser charging-friendly for the Evolution Bond, Estate Planning Bond, Regular Investment account, International Portfolio Bond, Legacy Planning Bond and Secure Advantage.


Aviva announced it was retail distribution (RDR) ready in September when it was able to facilitate initial adviser charging on annuities and retirement plans, bonds, personal pensions, group personal pensions and on the Aviva wrap

It will not be administering ongoing adviser charging for bonds and adviser charging on legacy products will only be facilitated on personal pensions and the wrap.

Existing pension products will either have a reduced annual management charge or an increased allocation rate.

It will offer adviser charging on its personal pension and will also allow it on top-ups and increases on income drawdown and its Your Pension Select @ Aviva and Commercial Union Pension plans.

Group personal pensions will have consultancy charging functionality and will also allow flexibility for an individual within the group to turn on adviser charging. Aviva will continue to provide commission on pre-RDR schemes.

With annuities, Aviva will offer both factory gate pricing and adviser charging. Its pension annuity, with-profit annuity, immediate life annuity and fixed-term retirement plan will all offer adviser charging.

Aviva will not offer adviser charging on collectives because it expects this will be mostly done through platforms.

Aviva is also set to close four products that will not be ready for the RDR on 23 November: the Aviva Sipp, Income Drawdown, Crystallised Pension Plan, Your Pension Protector. The company will continue to service the four closed products.

Standard Life

Standard life launched unveiled its adviser charging proposition on 15 October and announced that it has seen significant uptake since its launch.

It has seen more than 6,500 existing wrap accounts moved over to adviser charging since going live with the charging structure, replacing its previous client-agreed remuneration structure.

Adviser charging is also available on its Active Money Sipp and Active Money personal pension, with an option to continue with customer agreed remuneration-based transactions until the end of the year.

Standard Life Retail International bond and annuities will accept adviser charging from early December.

It will also facilitate initial, but not ongoing, adviser charging for annuities.

Standard said it would not offer adviser charging on products where there was limited demand or which it no longer actively marketed including retail endowments, protection products, Tailored Investment Bond, With-Profit Bond, Distribution Bond, Individual stakeholder pension, Personal Pension Plan, Personal Pension Flex and Personal Pension one.


Skandia announced its intention to provide adviser charging for all its life products in August.

For the Skandia Life Pensions range, the core range of products will facilitate adviser charging. New business will continue to be directed through Skandia Life’s current personal pension, buyout bond and drawdown contract.

Some earlier pension products will stay open to top-up business and will be developed to facilitate adviser charging.

Older Skandia Life pensions that are pre April 2011 will still accept top-ups but will not facilitate adviser charging. Some older products will cease to accept top-ups.

Its maximum investment plan will close to new business and top ups.

The Skandia Life Bond range is already closed to new business but will continue to accept top ups, however the company will not facilitate adviser charging on the top-ups.

Skandia’s adviser charging facility for its Skandia Investment Solutions platform launched in May and allows advisers to select monetary or percentage options for initial, ongoing, switching and ad hoc fees.

The company set maximum fees of 4.5% for initial, 3% for switching and 1.5% ongoing and will deduct the fees from client accounts.


Life company Zurich has announced plans to facilitate adviser charging through its platform and close some of its off-platform products.

Zurich, headed in the UK by Gary Shaughnessy (pictured), said that its intermediary platform will be the ‘cornerstone of its post-RDR proposition’ and it will close its Zurich Sipp, Zurich Trustee Investment Plan, Sterling ISA, Sterling Investment Account, Sterling Investment Bond, to new business.

The products that will be offered through the platform are its cash ISA, stocks and shares ISA, its investment account for unwrapped assets, and its retirement account.

The provider is also launching a new off-platform Sterling Investment Bond from 1 January. It will also keep business open for its International Portfolio Bond, but adviser charging will not be available on these products.

For annuity business, which is mostly written on a non-advised basis, it will not support commission payments on any policies after 30 December or adviser charging going forward.

Zurich will pay commission on new policies beyond 31 December where there is an illustration and application dated prior to 31 December and where payment and application is received by 15 January.


Prudential plans to offer adviser charging on a number of annuities, pensions, onshore and offshore products from January 2013.

For annuities, the Guaranteed Pensions Annuity and Income Choice Annuity are all available with adviser charging.

For pensions, adviser charging is offered for the Flexible Retirement Plan (including drawdown) and the Trustee Investment Plan.

For onshore bonds, the Prudence Inheritance Bond and the Prudential Investment Plan and for offshore products the Portfolio Account and International Prudence Bond are all available through adviser charging.

Clients can choose to pay a monthly, quarterly, half yearly or yearly adviser charge depending on the product.

Friends Life

Friends Life has unveiled its plans for the post-RDR world and will offer adviser charging on investment products for new business in the UK in the Friends Provident International division in July.

The company will also provide an adviser charging facility for some of its annuities which can be paid as a percentage of the fund or a flat monetary amount. It will continue to offer fee facilitation for individual full Sipp drawdowns which it offers from the Sipp bank account.

Friends Life will provide a consultancy charging facility for its corporate benefits group schemes and also offer a range of remuneration choices on a consultancy charging basis for the flexible retirement account on its corporate platform.

It will continue to offer existing commission on individual and group protection but will also facilitate adviser charging if agreed by the adviser and client.

Scottish Widows

In September Scottish Widows launched an onshore investment bond without adviser charging as any withdrawal from the bond would impact on the client’s ability to maximise their 5% deferred tax allowance.

Scottish Widows has announced it will add a fixed ongoing monetary charge option to its Retirement Account from November in addition to the existing initial, fund based and ad hoc advice charges.

The monetary charge can be paid either for a fixed number of instalments or for the lifetime of the plan, monthly or yearly on the charging date, on its own or in conjunction with a fund based ongoing charge.

The company also stated advisers will be required to convert existing trail commission where the consumer receives advice to top up their policy. If no advice is provided no changes are required and the existing fun-based charge will continue to be paid for the lifetime of the plan.

Scottish Life

Scottish Life will be facilitating adviser charging and closing some of its older contracts to new plans or increments.

The provider will be supporting adviser payment on its individual pension, Pension Portfolio, from 31 December 2012.

Its group pension plans will also facilitate adviser charging at a later date to enable ad hoc adviser and consultancy charges to be taken from existing plans, subject to each client’s consent.

Scottish Life plans on putting out more information on their changes to group pensions later this year.

It will close its executive pension plan and Section 32 buyout plan to new business.

Scottish Life will be closed to new business and to increments for its Talisman Executive Pension Plan, Crest Money Purchase, Capital Investment Bonds and Trustee Investment Plan from 31 December.

Products closed to increments from 31 December include the group personal pension plans for non-employed customers, Continuation Plans, the Talisman Personal Pension Plans, Talisman Free-standing AVC Plans, Talisman Retirement Options Plans (phased retirement), Talisman Retirement Options (phased retirement income drawdown), Talisman Group Personal Pension, Profitbuilder Plus Plan, and Capital Trust plans.


New York-based provider MetLife is planning to facilitate adviser charging across the majority of its products from 31 December 2012.

MetLife will be offering initial and ongoing adviser charging on its retirement portfolio, trustee retirement portfolio, UK Bonds, and International Bonds.

Clients will have the option to either take out a percentage of single premium or transfer value, a monetary amount or regular premiums on some of the plans. MetLife will also facilitate ad hoc charges of a monetary amount.

Canada Life

Canada Life has not announced details of its post-RDR proposition but has said it has plans to unveil an adviser charger proposition in the near future.

The provider said it was making enhancements to its range of onshore and offshore investments, annuities, protection and estate planning solutions.

This includes the removal of high allocation charging options and the addition of comprehensive adviser charging facilities, it said.

Legal & General said it planned to announce its post-RDR proposition later this year.

Aegon has unveiled its post retail distribution review proposition which includes the launch of a new income drawdown plan called One Retirement, but will see it close a series of products to new business.

Aegon said it was closing several products to new business, including Retirement Control, Income for Life, Flexible Investment Plan, Private Client Portfolio, Money Market Portfolio, Investment Portfolio and Estate Planning Portfolio.

It will not facilitate an adviser or consultancy charging on its onshore bond, annuities, individual stakeholder, group stakeholder and individual section 32 but the products will be available at factory gate prices.

The life company will be facilitating adviser charging or consultancy charging on the Aegon Retirement Choices wrap. It will also facilitate it for group personal pensions, flexible personal pension and the One Retirement new income drawdown plan. The company said it would launch an RDR-ready Flexible Pension Plan and Group Personal Pension product on 12 November and replace its current income drawdown plan with the new One Retirement plan.

LV= unveiled its adviser charging structure last week, which available for implementation.

Adviser charging will be facilitated on LV=’s Enhanced Annuity, Fixed Term Annuity, Investment Linked Annuity, Sipp and Flexible Guarantee Bond Series 2.

Sipp, annuity and flexible guarantee bond quotes will be available up until 31 December 2012 on a pre-RDR commission basis.

It added that if a requote was requested or it received the application after this date, as long as the original quote was dated before 31 December 2012 it could be processed on commission terms, provided no further related advice had been given.

Flexible Guarantee Bond applications must be completed before 9 February 2013 and Sipp and annuity applications before 6 April 2013, otherwise they will need to be charged on a post RDR basis.