Bond Dickinson, DWF added to new Suffolk Life panel Scotland and Northern Ireland

British pensions administrator Suffolk Life has appointed Bond Dickinson, DWF, Curle Stewart, Tughans and Wilson Nesbitt for Scotland and Northern Ireland with immediate effect.

Suffolk Life expanded its panel to enhance buying and selling commercial property within their self-invested personal pensions (SIPPs) in Scotland and Northern Ireland, having received positive feedback after the launch of the inaugural roster of Birketts, Bond Dickinson and Thrings in February (4 February 2014).

All firms on the panel have committed to the same menu of fees for commercial property transactions, ranging from £1,200 for properties valued up to £249,999 to £2,100 for properties valued at £750,000 or more.

There are also fixed-fees for additional charges, rent deposit deeds at £350 for example. However, Suffolk Life states in marketing material that fees may be reviewed if the service provided is more complex than expected.

Investors do not have to use firms on the list but Suffolk Life’s additional fees are only offered at a fixed rate if the investor does opt for a panel firm.

Suffolk Life property director Dominic Savage said: “The feedback from advisers and investors in response to our initial panel for England and Wales exceeded our expectations. It made sense to expand the panel with appropriate legal expertise and experience into Scotland and Northern Ireland.”

Curle Stewart director Graham Richmond said the firm looked forward to deepenig its relationship with Suffolk Life through the panel appointment and added: “It is also an important step in the recognition by institutional clients that there can be first class service from smaller dedicated practice units and we applaud Suffolk Life for having the confidence to make an appointment of this kind.”

DWF real estate associate Jennifer Laurie said: “Suffolk Life were looking to work with firms with strong combined property and pensions expertise and DWF has specific experience in investing in property for SIPPs so we have an understanding of the nuances particular to transactions of a SIPP provider.”

Since the merger between Dickinson Dees and Bond Pearce went live on 1 May (5 August 2013) Bond Dickinson has picked up a number of new clients, including the Education Funding Agency, Colgate Palmolive (20 May 2013) and, most recently, the national lot for the Crescent Purchasing Consortium’s (CPC) legal services framework (3 February 2014).