When it comes to the world of finance and financial language, there is endless terminology that could throw you off. Whether this is to do with pensions, investments, financial mis-selling or even banking, you’ll often find jargon that can make understanding more difficult than it needs to be. This guide covers a wide range of popular financial jargon which should shed some light on that difficult terminology.

The financial terms discussed in this guide do not always reflect the services offered by Expert Pension Claims 

SIPP (Self Invested Personal Pension)

In short, this is a “Self Invested Personal Pension” –  a pension that’s personal to you. You pay into it, and you decide where your contributions are invested. The downside is that if you get it wrong, your hard-earned cash can easily disappear. 

Ask yourself this question: Am I an investment expert? If the answer is no to that question then maybe you need someone to look at your SIPP for you. 

Don’t confuse this help with “getting your pension money out” –  those types of scams are frowned on by the FCA who approve pension suppliers. Our advice simply looks at where you have chosen to invest your pension and if high risk we will help you get compensation for that mis-selling.

Examples of Mis-Sold SIPPs 

Walsall Burial Plots | Salina SeasSCS Farmland | InvestUS | Green Oil Plantations | Rimondi Grande | Freedom Bay | Los Pandos | Park First Global Forestry | Carbon Credits | Store First Storage Pods | The Resort Group Overseas Property | Elysian Fuels  | Ethical Forestry  | Harlequin Property  | Tailormade Investment

SERP (State Earnings Related Pension Scheme)

This is more commonly known as the ‘State Pension’, as it was replaced as such back in 2002. However, the term SERP was the abbreviated version of State Earning Related Pension. Employees who paid their full contributions towards their National Insurance between 1978 and 2002 earned a SERPS pension. 

Private Pension Calculator

A calculator, usually found online, where you can calculate your state pension amount alongside defining a target income and retirement age. 

Marginal Tax Rate

Also known as “highest tax rate”. In the UK, your income tax is split into different bands and therefore different rates are paid. It may sound like a complex term, but it just means that you have the highest tax rate. 

Pressure Selling

A term used when a seller has used unreasonable force or persistence, which has made someone feel in some way pushed into an agreement. 

Ethical Forestry

Ethical Forestry was an investment scheme regarding trees in Costa Rica. It was promoted as a SIPP type investment by a company in Bournemouth which later collapsed and went into liquidation. Ethical Forestry is now known as a type of SIPP claim in the UK. Read more about ethical forestry here. 


This may look like a long code, but it’s a (very necessary) abbreviation for “earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization). An EBITDA gives an understanding of raw earnings or “untouched” income, before other things come into play and re-calculate them. Unlike net income, this gives you the absolute full picture. 

Net Income & Gross Income 

Net income is your total earnings and profit once tax and other deductions have been made. It’s commonly known as your “take home” income. Gross income is your total amount before anything has been deducted. So gross is the ‘before’, and net is the ‘after’ – which is often a good way of remembering the difference. 

High-Risk Investment Reclaim

Put simply, this is an investment claim which carried with it a high risk, that someone is trying to get their money back for. The chances of the investment being lost, either partly or entirely, are classed as high. Investors may still try to reclaim this depending on the circumstances. In many cases, a high risk investment will result in loss. 

Lifetime Allowance

This term refers to pensions, and basically means the limit that you can draw from any given pension scheme before you start getting extra charges. So if you are wanting to draw out a lump sum at any point, you have an allowance that’s free. This changes over time with inflation. The lifetime allowance for the tax year 2019/20 is £1,055,000. 

Unregulated Collective Investment Schemes (UCIS)

As suggested by the name “collective”, this is an investment shared with several people, otherwise known as a “pooled” investment. A mutual fund in assets which can spread over a range of types. As with any other type of investment, a collective one can be mis-sold all the same. 

Any questions about financial mis-selling?

This jargon buster is intended to shed some light around financial and investment terminology, which may help if you are investigating the possibility of financial mis-selling. If there are any terms you would like us to add, or any you would like to ask us about, feel free to contact the team here at Expert Pension Claims, and we’ll be more than happy to assist.

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