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  • FIRST POST
    • happyhero
    • By happyhero 13th Mar 17, 6:41 PM
    • 1,096Posts
    • 54Thanks
    happyhero
    Is this company a real one or a scam one?
    • #1
    • 13th Mar 17, 6:41 PM
    Is this company a real one or a scam one? 13th Mar 17 at 6:41 PM
    Can anybody help me with a company that has contacted us please?

    My stepfather who is 90 and has dementia was a keen investor but towards the last few years he was talked into buying into some companies that I would say were a bad idea and would come to nothing, so its money thrown away. I contacted Hargreaves Lansdown to sell these companies for my stepfather but they told me that these companies were unlisted and so not tradeable in their current form and the only way to sell them would be by contacting the company itself. I tried this but of course it was a waste of time as they would not buy them back and said they would have to find a new buyer that might be interested, which of course came to nothing.

    It is annoying that he was virtually conned into buying these companies and he has lost a few thousand doing it but at least it was only the last few years he did this.

    Anyway one of these companies has recently been dissolved on the 21st February (at least we know its gone for good now), this company is called IPOINT UK LIMITED. But my Stepfather has been contacted by a company called VINCENT AND COMPANY SPECIALIST TAX PRACTITIONERS.

    They have his name and address plus they know he owned these shares. They say he could be entitled to a tax refund up to £3,072 and they can help, their fee being 20% success fee plus VAT and all he has to do is sign the form putting on his email and telephone number.

    Does it sound like a scam? Is there any way to check if this company can be trusted?

    I’d guess scam, I mean why should they offer a large tax amount other than it sounds good, surely if there was anything to come it would be in the form of compensation and not tax for a start.

    Why should he be entitled to so much tax? He would only have put between £1000 to £5000 at the very most in so this tax figure sounds weird to me.

    My mother is saying they are not asking for anything so just send it back and see what happens, ie what have we got to lose but I’m not so trusting. We would be adding to the information they have giving emails and phone numbers, not a lot in itself but slowly they are getting more and more private information and who knows what they ask next, ie bank account details etc.

    What do you guys think? Anybody any ideas on this or experience of the company?
Page 1
    • Dazed and confused
    • By Dazed and confused 13th Mar 17, 6:52 PM
    • 1,706 Posts
    • 743 Thanks
    Dazed and confused
    • #2
    • 13th Mar 17, 6:52 PM
    • #2
    • 13th Mar 17, 6:52 PM
    Starting point, do you expect him to have actually paid £3072 tax in the current tax year?
    • AnotherJoe
    • By AnotherJoe 13th Mar 17, 6:54 PM
    • 7,257 Posts
    • 7,781 Thanks
    AnotherJoe
    • #3
    • 13th Mar 17, 6:54 PM
    • #3
    • 13th Mar 17, 6:54 PM
    Don't know but why not give them a newly created email address and your phone number and answer the phone as him should anyone call and ask for him, as long as no money needs to be sent the risks would seem to be minimal.

    http://www.vintcentandco.com/share-losses/4583338551

    EDIT: Now seems like a reasonably sophisticated scam so dont do what i suggested !
    Last edited by AnotherJoe; 14-03-2017 at 6:44 AM.
    • jimjames
    • By jimjames 13th Mar 17, 8:09 PM
    • 12,021 Posts
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    jimjames
    • #4
    • 13th Mar 17, 8:09 PM
    • #4
    • 13th Mar 17, 8:09 PM
    I seem to recall reading another thread from someone who got one of these tax refunds. It was along the lines of HMRC refund first and check details later. So you get some money, pay 20% out to the claim people and then have to pay 100% back to HMRC when they realise it's fraudulent.

    According to their website "If you have recently lost money investing in company shares, you may be entitled to an income tax refund under a combination of different tax legislation."
    I'd be very interested to know what this combination of legislation is that gives you a refund of tax on investments.
    Remember the saying: if it looks too good to be true it almost certainly is.
    • badger09
    • By badger09 13th Mar 17, 8:32 PM
    • 5,129 Posts
    • 4,339 Thanks
    badger09
    • #5
    • 13th Mar 17, 8:32 PM
    • #5
    • 13th Mar 17, 8:32 PM
    Don't know but why not give them a newly created email address and your phone number and answer the phone as him should anyone call and ask for him, as long as no money needs to be sent the risks would seem to be minimal.

    http://www.vintcentandco.com/share-losses/4583338551
    Originally posted by AnotherJoe
    The mere fact that they can't spell 'necessary' would make me suspicious
    • Malthusian
    • By Malthusian 13th Mar 17, 10:12 PM
    • 2,899 Posts
    • 4,144 Thanks
    Malthusian
    • #6
    • 13th Mar 17, 10:12 PM
    • #6
    • 13th Mar 17, 10:12 PM
    The mere fact that they can't spell 'necessary' would make me suspicious
    Originally posted by badger09
    Or "Data Proteection Act" (seriously).

    Sounds very like a scam. They get their name and address from the shareholders' register (or maybe the suckers list from the original boiler room scam that led to your stepfather buying the things) and then execute a classic advance fee fraud.

    If you invest in companies that qualify for EIS relief you can claim losses against income tax, but if that's what your stepfather had done then either he or his accountant or his adviser would have told him to do that already. It's not something random people would contact you about PPI-style. And even if they did, the figure of £3,072 makes no sense. They'd need to know how much he invested and his taxable income to be able to give a figure.
    • Jogle
    • By Jogle 14th Mar 17, 12:43 AM
    • 48 Posts
    • 31 Thanks
    Jogle
    • #7
    • 14th Mar 17, 12:43 AM
    • #7
    • 14th Mar 17, 12:43 AM
    I seem to recall reading another thread from someone who got one of these tax refunds. It was along the lines of HMRC refund first and check details later. So you get some money, pay 20% out to the claim people and then have to pay 100% back to HMRC when they realise it's fraudulent.

    According to their website "If you have recently lost money investing in company shares, you may be entitled to an income tax refund under a combination of different tax legislation."
    I'd be very interested to know what this combination of legislation is that gives you a refund of tax on investments.
    Originally posted by jimjames
    It sounded familiar to me too, although it wasn't a thread, it was a letter to Tony Hetherington of the Financial Mail. It is here:
    http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/comment/article-4167024/HMRC-want-4k-tax-refund-dodgy-investments-back.html
    • GDB2222
    • By GDB2222 14th Mar 17, 5:24 AM
    • 13,967 Posts
    • 75,027 Thanks
    GDB2222
    • #8
    • 14th Mar 17, 5:24 AM
    • #8
    • 14th Mar 17, 5:24 AM
    It sounded familiar to me too, although it wasn't a thread, it was a letter to Tony Hetherington of the Financial Mail. It is here:
    http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/comment/article-4167024/HMRC-want-4k-tax-refund-dodgy-investments-back.html
    Originally posted by Jogle
    That is really helpful.
    No reliance should be placed on the above! Absolutely none, do you hear?
    • bowlhead99
    • By bowlhead99 14th Mar 17, 6:36 AM
    • 6,708 Posts
    • 11,913 Thanks
    bowlhead99
    • #9
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:36 AM
    • #9
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:36 AM
    The mere fact that they can't spell 'necessary' would make me suspicious
    Originally posted by badger09
    Or "Data Proteection Act" (seriously).
    Originally posted by Malthusian
    There's also subtleties like that fact that they give Oliver Vintcent the impressive-sounding and assuring title of 'Senior Partner' in this firm with his team of experienced tax professionals, when it is not a partnership at all but a standard limited company of which he's a director and co-shareholder with another member of the Vintcent family.

    For a team of experienced tax or accounting professionals it's disconcerting that they haven't been able to file their annual accounts at companies house on time in any of the last five years and were late with their annual return/confirmation statement last year - which is presumably what caused them to get a strike off notice in December (rescinded after a few days).

    Sounds very like a scam. They get their name and address from the shareholders' register (or maybe the suckers list from the original boiler room scam that led to your stepfather buying the things) and then execute a classic advance fee fraud.
    Yes, a good policy is to ignore cold callers on any subject as most reputable businesses don't need to cold call. In the area of investments and lost money, it's unsurprising that some people are tempted to hear them out and give them info.

    They offer to work on a 'success fee' basis. So presumably the success fee is taken when HMRC pay out, but when HMRC fully process the claim and it fails (because there is no proper supporting documentation as the stepfather was not actually invested in any qualifying (e.g. EIS) scheme, and did not invest directly in shares newly-issued by the company etc), they won't want to pay you the fee back - but HMRC would demand the gross amount of their payout back (and maybe put a black mark against your name for submitting false claims).
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