Is this a pension through an insurance company? If so, which insurance company is it?
How long had he been drawing the pension for?
I think the company you mean is Aegon. They are a very large and reputable insurance company and pension provider although, like all companies they can make mistakes.
When someone retires and there is a pot of money in their pension, they make a decision as to whether they want a single life pension which dies when they do, a pension with a widow’s pension which carries on after they die and then pays to their widow but obviously, because there are 2 lives as potential recipients, the person taking the pension will get less. The widow’s pension is usually 50% of the main pension.
There are other alternatives such as a pension guaranteed for 5 years or 10 years regardless of whether someone is married or not. It would just continue to pay out to the estate. What Aegon are alleging is that your husband took out the single life pension which would die with him.
It may be that he had a financial adviser who advised him on this or it may be that he just signed the paperwork himself of his own. If he had done that, the insurance company would have spent about 20 minutes on the phone with him going through all his various. That phone call recorded for training monitoring and compliance purposes.
If you are adamant that your husband did not do this on a single life basis and would have provided for you, then you can raise a complaint with Aegon as part of that process, they should let you have the documentation signed by your late husband.
If they don’t do that you are still not happy with their answer, is a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman service will then look at this in depth and decide whether this was your husband’s choice or whether it was an error on behalf of the insurer.
Can I clarify anything for you?
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