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MP Bob Neill campaigns for victims of Equitable Life pension collapse

PUBLISHED: 10:45 11 December 2014 | UPDATED: 10:45 11 December 2014

Bob Neill

Bob Neill

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He says that more should be done to help victims who saw the value of their pensions plummet

Conservative MP for Bromley and Chislehurst, Bob Neill, says he is standing up for victims of Equitable Life pensions scandal.

He says that since becoming the constituency’s MP in 2006, he has received countless letters about the financial strain members of the public have experienced as a result of pensions provider, Equitable Life, slashing the value of people’s investments after it lost a legal battle over pension guarantees. The pensions provider almost collapsed in 2000, leaving many who had an annuity with it out of pocket.

Mr Neill says that despite campaigning for redress, and seeing success for some, more still needs to be done.

He said: “The government made clear its commitment to victims of the scheme shortly after it entered office in 2010 through the Equitable Life (Payments) Act, which, so far, has issued £990.5 million to 887,061 policyholders.

“Whilst this has gone a long way, and much further than the previous government, in helping those who suffered through the scheme recuperate in part their losses, I believe more can still be done and efforts should be redoubled to this end.

“Indeed, I raised my concerns with Andrea Leadsom, Economic Secretary to Treasury. At the meeting I was keen to point out that addressing this issue had now become a matter of honour, highlighting the government’s comparatively poor treatment of policyholders, who through no fault of their own have lost substantial sums of money, when contrasted to the bailouts extended to bankers whose financial difficulties have been brought about by their own maladministration.”

The MP says that following the Autumn Statement last week, now is the perfect time to ensure greater action is taken in the future.

He said: “Following the Autumn Statement, I have also written to the chancellor to express the need for further, concrete action to build upon the progress that has already been made.

“As a Party, we are committed to giving hardworking people peace of mind in retirement, and to fully achieve this I believe we must make every effort to bridge some of the gap between the £1.5 billion currently available to policyholders, and the estimated £4 billion which was lost in total.

“I will, of course, continue to do all I can to ensure justice for the victims of Equitable Life, and will keep constituents up to date with progress at every stage.”

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