Applying for a permission

Personal Pension Scheme Advisor


The purpose of this page is to make sure that the application process is fully understood.

This section sets out:

  • What a Personal Pension Scheme Adviser is and what this regulated activity would allow you to do
  • Authorisation Process
  • Capital Requirements
  • Additional Information 

What is a Personal Pension Scheme Adviser and what would this regulated activity allow you to do?

The Regulations define the regulated activity as – advising another person on: 

(a) The merits of the person participating in, or being a member of, a personal pension scheme or occupational pension scheme; or

(b) The acquisition or disposal of any interests, rights, benefits or other entitlements in, under or in connection with a personal pension scheme or an occupational pension scheme;

or offering or agreeing to give such advice.

This regulated activity would allow you to provide a customer with advice relating to:

  • becoming a member of a personal pension scheme and/or a specific personal pension scheme;
  • becoming a member of an occupational scheme and/or a particular occupational pension scheme;
  • advising on AVCs (whether or not free-standing);
  • transferring rights and/or assets from one pension scheme to another pension scheme; and
  • taking benefits from a pension scheme.

The authorisation of this regulated activity falls under the scope of Financial Services Act 2019.


Application Process

Applicants should submit an application pack with all relevant documents. We will not consider an application complete if there are any outstanding documents.

The application pack must consist of: 

  • Application Fee;
  • Application Form;
  • Financial Projections for the next 3 years
    • Stress Test on Financial Projections;
    • Profit and Loss account;
    • Balance Sheet;
  • Regulated Individual Form (for each Regulated Individual);
  • Non-Executive Director Form (for each non-executive director);
  • Controller Form (for each Controller);
  • Business Plan;
  • Risk methodology and framework
  • Supporting Policies and Procedures
  • Details of Source of Wealth/Source of Funds (including final ownership structure, details of capital within the group, how the funding will be provided, access to further funds and 3-year financial statements for companies providing the funding. If an individual will provide more than 10% of the funding, we will require an independently verified statement of wealth); 
  • Busines Continuity Plan; and
  • Any other document the applicant considers the GFSC should take into consideration as part of the application.

Please request cloud access from the Authorisation team in order to submit the application pack. Requests should be sent via E-mail to with the following information in the subject field: ‘Name of Regulated Firm/Applicant – Application’. Paper copies are not required unless indicated by the Authorisation team. 

Please note that we accept signed signature copies sent via e-mail and electronic signatures, which must originate from the Regulated Firm’s/Applicant’s domain.  


Capital Requirements

Regulated Firms are required, on an ongoing basis, to self-assess the level of financial resources required to ensure an orderly wind-down, subject to a minimum of the higher of:

  • 4% of Turnover or
  • £15,000

This assessment should take account of the excess on the firm's professional indemnity policy.


Additional Information

The business plan should comprehensively set out:

  • What services the firm intends to carry out and how it proposes to conduct the activity;
  • Board structure and terms of reference, including details of any sub-committees set up by the Board to assist them carry out their duties;
  • The firm’s risk management function;
  • An assessment of the main risks facing the firm and how these are to be mitigated;
  • The resources that are to be made available and the systems that the applicant intends to employ;
  • Target market;
  • How clients will be sourced;
  • How records will be maintained;
  • How, and by whom, any significant decisions will be made;
  • Structure charts outlining both in-house and outsourced operations;
  • Details of its compliance with the Anti-Money Laundering requirements;
  • Details of outsourcing arrangements and how the firm will monitor and oversee these, including the controls implemented by the firm on these arrangements;
  • If the applicant forms part of a larger group, details should also be provided of the activities of the group and a description of its structure;
  • How the firm proposes to conduct activities;
  • How the firm will ensure that consumers are protected and their suitable needs are met;
  • Compliance with AML requirements (if applicable);
  • What reporting lines the firm will establish; and
  • Business Continuity Plan.

The GFSC will be seeking evidence that the firm has considered, documented and implemented the risk, compliance and operational issues associated with the proposed activities.

Applicants should ensure that the business plan is coherent with the firm’s risk appetite and capacity.