The Pension Scheme Bill should be further amended to make the at-retirement guidance guarantee tougher and stop people sleepwalking into poor value products, Royal London has said.
As the Bill enters the House of Lords for its Second Reading tomorrow, the mutual life and pensions company urged peers to strengthen it.
It warned that, without appropriate impartial advice consumers are likely to use their new-found freedom to buy unsuitable products like income drawdown on a non-advised basis or 'sleepwalk' into poor value products offered by their pension provider.
Phil Loney, Royal London group chief executive, said: 'With less than four months to go we can see a "perfect storm" brewing.
'Unless action is taken now to prevent the combination of a dramatic fall in the availability of impartial advice with the introduction of new found pension freedoms the result could be massively detrimental to the consumer.'
He also called for advice to be 'impartial' and not simply 'a vehicle for the incumbent pension provider to sell their own products'.
'As the Pension Scheme Bill enters the House of Lords, this is the last chance to ensure these reforms deliver on the Budget rhetoric.'
A report by Cazalet Consulting, commissioned by Royal London, argued that the Retail Distribution Review (RDR), the subsequent ban on consultancy charging and the lack of relationship between scheme adviser and members, all conspired to limit 'middle market' retirees' access to affordable financial advice.
Royal London said the need for impartial advice goes much further than the government's proposed 'guidance guarantee'.
The company said the start of the Bill's legislative scrutiny would give peers from across the political spectrum the opportunity to put pressure on the government to bring forward amendments, including setting out detailed proposals on how the advice market can be improved to meet the real needs of consumers most effectively.