The regulations around how we provide the International Bond to UK customers have changed.

As you may be aware, when the UK left the EU back in 2020, Standard Life International – like many other International Bond providers – was able to continue its operations exactly as it had been before Brexit. This was thanks to the Temporary Permissions Regime.

This arrangement came to an end on 30 December 2023 and, from that point, we’ll be using our long-standing Jersey Category A licence to continue our operations in the UK.
 

What this means for your clients

First of all, the regulatory shift won’t have any impact on the benefits and tax advantages your clients are currently able to enjoy through their bond with us, and the high-quality service they receive from us right now will remain exactly the same after the change takes place.

However, as a consequence of Standard Life International being resident in the EU and thereby relying on its Jersey Category A licence, the following changes apply from 31 December 2023:

1. Your clients will no longer be able to access the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS)

In the unlikely event that Standard Life International becomes insolvent, your clients will no longer be able to call on protections that would have previously been available to them under the FSCS. This change is in line with the broader market – and, right now, there is no equivalent compensation scheme in Ireland.

2. Your clients won’t be able to refer any complaints to the UK Financial Ombudsman Service

If a client was to have a complaint against Standard Life International, which we couldn’t resolve within the timeframes set out in their policy conditions, they’ll no longer be able to ask the UK Financial Ombudsman Service for support. They will however be able to refer the matter to the Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman of Ireland.

We are now writing to customers to let them know what this means for them. View a copy of the letter.

 

How we continue to offer a strong and stable partnership

Standard Life International is authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland (CBI) and must adhere to strict insurance solvency standards – otherwise known as Solvency II.

As you already know, under the Solvency II requirements, we need to identify key risks to our business operations. We also need to hold sufficient capital to make sure we can not only withstand these risks, but also meet the financial commitments we’ve made to our customers. This capital buffer is known as the Solvency Capital Requirement (SCR).

We hold more than double the capital than is needed under the SCR – so both you and your clients can be confident you’re dealing with a well-capitalised and financially secure company.

Standard Life International’s SCR position as at the end of 2022  
SCR €329m
Available capital €766m
Capital to SCR 233%

These firm foundations of financial strength are recognised by independent actuarial consultant AKG, who rate us as ‘very strong’. You can find their full report on our website. We’re also a subsidiary of Phoenix Group, the UK’s largest long-term savings and retirement business.

 

Got a question? 

If you’d like to know more about these changes, please refer to our Q&A document. Alternatively, give us a call on 0345 607 0216. Call charges will vary.

 

The information on this site is for qualified financial advisers and must not be relied on by anyone else. If you are not an adviser please go to our customer website for more information about our products and services.