I have an Aviva small self-administered pension scheme and now wish to encash in full. Should be straightforward? Not with this bunch of cowboys.
Here are my experiences:-
Calling 'customer services' takes ages to answer
When they do answer, the person cannot offer any meaningful help without putting you in another 30 minute call queue
Aviva confirmed all paperwork was in order, but would take 10 business days to 'process'
Called Aviva on the 11th business day having heard nothing
When questioned on the reason for inaction, their reply was "your address has changed". No attempt to contact me to resolve
Put through after 35 minutes on hold to someone whose first language wasn't English - barely intelligible
Advised to email confirmation of change of address. This was done immediately along with 2 utility bills attached
Another week goes by, still no contact. Called again. See points 1 and 2
Eventually get told "we haven't actioned your change of address". The reason: I didn't send in a letter confirming my change of address
Advised that, once change of address letter was received, the encashment would take place in 2 - 3 days
Initiate a formal complaint
Sent in letter confirming new address, received Friday 8.11 a.m
Tuesday p.m. - scheme practitioner (who has administered scheme since it's inception) called Aviva to be told "can't talk to you - you're not listed as having anything to do with this account!"
Wednesday lunchtime I called - "we have your letter and are looking at it. Assuming everything is in order, we will then wait 10 business days before doing anything further"
This is the 8th day since initiating my complaint - no acknowledgement has been received
This is service of such a shockingly poor level, that I don't believe it to be accidental. Many Aviva customers are alleging they do this to frustrate claims and encashments, so that you simply give up. I'm beginning to come to the same conclusion.