Steve Webb: ‘Where employers and pension schemes are dealing with bereaved relatives they must ensure that those who take calls treat relatives sensitively’
‘This clearly did not happen in this case. I am however pleased that following the involvement of This is Money, DHL have agreed to refund the money in this pension account.
‘This case does however highlight the complexity around “salary sacrifice” arrangements, and it is important that those signing up for a salary sacrifice scheme have all the implications explained to them.’
When This is Money first began investigating this case, Mr Isam told us that although the sum of money involved was not huge, Lisa was a single parent with a young daughter, and if she had invested her money into a pension scheme the firm shouldn’t be allowed to have it.
‘It’s a global multi-billion company that is keeping my daughter’s money. I thought it was really poor,’ he said.
He added regarding his talk with a DHL pension scheme staff member: ‘It was quite a short conversation. She didn’t offer any condolences or anything like that. She was fairly brusque.’
After receiving DHL’s letter offering the £600 payment, Mr Isam said: ‘It’s not about the money, it’s the principle involved. My daughter was employed by DHL and she paid into this pension. When I eventually got through to the scheme, someone there just said there was no money there.
‘I am pleased at the outcome but I am sure it wouldn’t have come about without your intervention.’
As well as being his daughter’s executor, Mr Isam is also legal guardian to his granddaughter. The DHL payment has been transferred to her bank account.