Overview

Financial Services

We have expert knowledge of law and regulation in the financial services sector. We support clients with balancing commercial objectives alongside the regulatory framework by providing pragmatic advice on compliance obligations.

Where controversies arise, we help resolve disputes and contentious regulatory issues, including: business critical disputes; internal and regulatory investigations; complex consumer redress; and financial crime.

Audit, Accountancy and Corporate Reporting

We are highly experienced at helping accountants, auditors, businesses and their directors navigate their way through the complex web of regulatory and civil issues which arise from audit and financial reporting controversies.  

Pensions Regulatory

Our team are market leaders with exceptional experience in pensions regulatory matters relating to schemes of all sizes. With a broad range of regulatory experience, we have recognised strength and depth in the field. Our regulatory experts include Clive Pugh who spent five years at the Pensions Regulator. 

Areas of focus

Our expertise in financial and professional investigations includes:

Financial Services

  • Civil Disputes: We are experts at managing the disputes process, with a wealth of experience in litigation, arbitration, mediation and ADR.
  • Investigations: We conduct internal investigations and advise on regulator led investigations on a wide range of regulatory and compliance issues.
  • Enforcement Proceedings: We represent clients in enforcement and disciplinary proceedings by the FCA and PRA. 
  • Consumer Redress: We advise clients on complex and high value consumer redress issues, typically where there are systemic issues giving rise to mass complaints, FOS claims and test case litigation.
  • Financial Crime: We advise on the full range of financial crime issues affecting financial institutions, including AML, bribery and corruption and fraud.  We are highly experienced at advising on overlapping criminal investigations by the SFO and NCA.

Audit, Accountancy and Corporate Reporting

  • Civil Disputes: We are highly experienced at advising clients on civil disputes in this sphere, including claims relating to defective audits, negligent due diligence and accountancy advice and tax negligent tax advice.
  • Investigations: We support clients through investigations and enforcement actions taken by the FRC, ICAEW and other professional bodies.  We have acted on a number of high profile FRC investigations under the AEP, including two matters where, after a lengthy investigation, the FRC took no enforcement action. 

Pensions Regulatory

  • Regulatory investigations: Our detailed knowledge includes extensive work on the regulatory investigations of Silentnight, Brunel and Great Lakes. We also advised on the Bernard Matthews and N W Brown investigations.
  • Clearance applications: We support our clients in taking forward successful clearance applications which are acceptable to the Pensions Regulator. 
  • Scheme funding: We work with clients to support successful pension funding negotiations in compliance with scheme specific funding regimes. We regularly work with clients on apportionment solutions and on managed PPF entry (“drop-ins”) by way of regulated apportionment arrangements and PPF compromises of scheme deficits.
  • Regulator’s powers: Our experience is wide ranging and includes acting on the first ever Contribution Notice, Desmonds.

Experience

Conducting an internal investigation for a retail insurer to ascertain the extent to which its claims handling procedures complied with ICOBS and treating customers fairly obligations.

Advising numerous SIPP operators on the regulatory and civil issues arising from their approach to due diligence on non-standard investments.

Conducting an FCA prompted internal investigation for an advertising business to identify the extent to which it had been performing financial promotion and credit brokerage without authorisation from the FCA.

Advising clients on mass PPI mis-selling complaints, the regulatory implications and the resolution of claims.

Advising a retail fund manager on regulatory issues and mass FOS claims arising from the illiquidity of EEA Life Settlement.

Advising a retail fund manager on regulatory and FOS compensation issues arising from the illiquidity of EEA Life Settlement.

Conducting an internal investigation for a retail insurer to ascertain the extent to which its claims handling procedures complied with ICOBS and treating customers fairly obligations.

Advising numerous SIPP operators on the regulatory and civil issues arising from their approach to due diligence on non-standard investments.

Conducting an FCA prompted internal investigation for an advertising business to identify the extent to which it had been performing financial promotion and credit brokerage without authorisation from the FCA. Advising a host authorised fund manager on an FCA investigation into its oversight of the fund.

Advising on the substantial regulatory matter of Silentnight.

Advising on the leading regulatory investigation relating to the Brunel Group.

Advising the Trustee of the McDonald’s Franchisees Pension Scheme in respect of a Warning Notice and Penalty Notice issued by the Pensions Regulator.

Advising on the major regulatory investigation relating to the acquisition of Bernard Matthews.

Advising the Desmonds Scheme on the first ever Contribution Notice issued by the Pensions Regulator.

Meet the team
Matthew Walker

Matthew Walker Partner

  • Dispute Resolution
  • Financial Services
  • Insurance
David Hall

David Hall Partner

  • Dispute Resolution
  • Banking Disputes
  • Business Crime and Regulatory Investigations
Suzanne-Padmore---132A6872

Suzanne Padmore Partner

  • Pensions Disputes
  • Professional Negligence
  • Financial services Disputes and Enforcement 
  • Judicial Review
  • Trust Disputes
  • Pensions Regulatory 
  • Life and Pensions 
Clive Pugh

Clive Pugh Pensions Partner and Head of Pensions Regulatory Investigations

  • Pensions Regulatory
  • Pensions Services
  • Pensions Legal Advice 

What others say...

They do not sit on the fence. The advice is actionable.  Even where the regulatory position is not clear, advice will set out the risk and appropriate mitigating actions in order that the business can move forward.
Legal 500 2021

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