Herein I tell how I went about claiming compensation from Scottish Amicable (Prudential) for an Endowment Policy mis-selling.
Some 9 years ago my wife and I purchased our present home. On the advice of our a Financial Advisor, went for an Interest Only Mortgage backed by two separate Endowment Policies. One of these was a policy that my wife’s parents had set up for her some years previously. The Mortgage and second Endowment Policy were new to us. The Endowment was from Scottish Amicable, and the Advisor made considerable commision from its sale.
In retrospect, I believe that we would have been better advised to have chosen a Part-Repayment Mortgage. Although I always suspected that we were mis-advised, I had never imagined that we had a case against the vendor.
Recently, however, I decided to make a claim anyway. During the time I had ignored things, the Policy passed from Scottish Amicable to the Prudential.
So, I looked carefully through the paperwork from the original sale, and picked out every point at which the advice we were given might have been misleading, incomplete or otherwise deficient. In all honesty, out Advisor had covered things pretty thoroughly, but there were gaps. I noted all of these in the letter of complaint I sent to the Prudential.
A couple of weeks after my initial letter of complaint, I received an official form from the company asking for all the information again. In places I felt that the form did not ask the right questions, and the spaces left for answers were tiny. So I wrote something like “see attatchment” on the form, and said everything I wanted to say on a separate sheet.
This week, we received a letter from Prudential stating that we hadbeen mis-sold our Policy. Interestingly, all but one of my reasons for the claim were rejected (unfairly, I think – but one reason for a mis-sale is reason enough). The admission of mis-selling was on the basis that our Advisor had not properly assessed our attitude to risk.
As a result of my complaint being upheld, I will soon receive a cheque for £367.86. Admittedly, this is not much compared to the projected short-fall on the Policy. However, it is calculated according to FSA rules: it is enough to put us back into the position we would have been in had we chosen a repayment mortgage in the first instance. Moreover, it is exactly £367.86 more than I would have received had I chosen not to make the complaint at all.
The moral of all this?
- If you think you might have a mis-selling claim against your Endowment Policy vendor, and you are within the time limits, make it.
- In your letter of complaint, include every reason that you can think of that might indicate that your policy was mis-sold.
- Don’t worry about sticking to the format of official forms – put everything down that you think might be important.
- If you are awarded compensation, it might well be less than you expect – but anything is better than nothing.
There are some wonderful resources regarding this Endowment Mis-Selling at MoneySavingExpert.com. I found them invaluable.
All comments are welcome!