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Standard Life endowment misselling?

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  • philharnott
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    Thank you for your contribution to this thread, "philharnott", much appreciated I'm sure.
    It's often easy to misinterpret the written word but point taken.
  • philharnott
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    Nasqueron wrote: »
    Telling someone that they can ignore a legally binding time bar on the incorrect statement that the 3 year rule can be started when they want it to start is false information.

    The 3 year rule is

    three years from the date on which the complainant became aware (or ought reasonably to have become aware) that he had cause for complaint

    That includes things like closing an account, the lender writing to you etc. As the OP sold the policy because it was not performing then that is a trigger for the 3 year rule. The fact they were contacted by this claims firm many years later does not somehow start a new 3 year period
    About 25 years ago I had a small extension built whilst on holiday....12 years later we wanted to extend it & when old plasterboard was removed the inner wall was missing much brickwork so this was the point when we could reasonably have become aware that there was a problem and under Building Regs a 3 year rule was applied. I haven't ' told ' anybody anything & agree with your comment about the claim firms contact years later.
  • Nasqueron
    Nasqueron Posts: 9,191 Forumite
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    About 25 years ago I had a small extension built whilst on holiday....12 years later we wanted to extend it & when old plasterboard was removed the inner wall was missing much brickwork so this was the point when we could reasonably have become aware that there was a problem and under Building Regs a 3 year rule was applied. I haven't ' told ' anybody anything & agree with your comment about the claim firms contact years later.


    That example, while it sounds correct to you, is unfortunately irrelevant as the 3 year rule is for financial purposes only - DISP is an FCA set of rules for complaints about the finance industry, not home building. In there, the 3 year rule can be applied after any action which might reasonably be seen as a trigger for you to make a complaint. It certainly does not have to be close to the product being taken out - for example an endowment mortgage taken out in 1980 could have been seen as perfectly good until the mid-1990s when the shortfall was becoming apparent and the regulators told the insurance companies to write to people to warn them on the shortfall - conceivably they could have triggered the three year clock nearly 20 years after the mortgage was taken out.


    Selling the endowment policy as the OP did (particularly as OP did it because it was not going to pay off the mortgage so knew by then it was a problem) is a trigger for the 3 year rule. As it almost certainly happened in the late 1990s when the warning flags were being raised, the time bar is correct.
  • philharnott
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    Nasqueron wrote: »
    That example, while it sounds correct to you, is unfortunately irrelevant as the 3 year rule is for financial purposes only - DISP is an FCA set of rules for complaints about the finance industry, not home building. In there, the 3 year rule can be applied after any action which might reasonably be seen as a trigger for you to make a complaint. It certainly does not have to be close to the product being taken out - for example an endowment mortgage taken out in 1980 could have been seen as perfectly good until the mid-1990s when the shortfall was becoming apparent and the regulators told the insurance companies to write to people to warn them on the shortfall - conceivably they could have triggered the three year clock nearly 20 years after the mortgage was taken out.


    Selling the endowment policy as the OP did (particularly as OP did it because it was not going to pay off the mortgage so knew by then it was a problem) is a trigger for the 3 year rule. As it almost certainly happened in the late 1990s when the warning flags were being raised, the time bar is correct.
    It's not that the buliding/construction complaint rule ' sounds correct to me ' but that it is correct and three year rules for bringing a complaint applies in areas outside of the financial industry but are obviously under different legislation. The principle is the same. The 'building' tale is true & I had ten years from when the first work was done but, as a lawyer explained, 3 from when I first realised there was a problem which could only have been from when the second work began. As DunstonH has recently clarified the three year point is not about realising that a complaint could be made but realising there was a problem. I haven't stated that it should be close to when a product was taken out. As I acknowledged the other day the FOS would likely reject a complaint on the basis that the product was disposed of years back because a problem was realised as you've indicated.
  • dunstonh
    dunstonh Posts: 116,895 Forumite
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    Timebars exist in all walks of life. Litigation via the courts has time limits. Financial Services has a double layer of consumer protection as you can use the regulated complaints process (With its own timebars) or you can use the courts with legal timebars.

    There are the potential for a number of timebars here.

    1987 date of purchase means it is pre-regulation. That means if an estate agent, solicitor, accountant, adviser/broker (IFAs didnt exist in 1987 but closest equivalent were usually in insurance brokers or similar) was used for purchase, they do not need to consider the complaint and there is no access to the FOS or FSCS. So, its game over.

    If the sale was made by a bank or building society or via the Standard Life salesforce, those distribution channels agreed to consider pre-regulation sales. Because of that, you also get access to the FOS (but not FSCS).

    Onto the 3/6 year timebar, this could be an issue as Std Life were active in using the 3 year time bar. We have had several SL endowments on our agency over the years and periodically get a report of the projections on each, the MEP and the timebar date. None of these were sold by us but they are ones agency transferred to us. Each and every one of them was timebarred. Most were sold by Halifax.
    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
  • Nasqueron
    Nasqueron Posts: 9,191 Forumite
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    It's not that the buliding/construction complaint rule ' sounds correct to me ' but that it is correct and three year rules for bringing a complaint applies in areas outside of the financial industry but are obviously under different legislation. The principle is the same. The 'building' tale is true & I had ten years from when the first work was done but, as a lawyer explained, 3 from when I first realised there was a problem which could only have been from when the second work began. As DunstonH has recently clarified the three year point is not about realising that a complaint could be made but realising there was a problem. I haven't stated that it should be close to when a product was taken out. As I acknowledged the other day the FOS would likely reject a complaint on the basis that the product was disposed of years back because a problem was realised as you've indicated.

    I meant that using that as an example sounds correct, not that the rules were not correct.

    I have quoted you the actual DISP rule on 3 years
    three years from the date on which the complainant became aware (or ought reasonably to have become aware) that he had cause for complaint

    Selling an endowment policy because it was not of high enough value is a reason to complain, hence a 3 year time bar can be applied if OP sold the policy
  • philharnott
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    Nasqueron wrote: »
    I meant that using that as an example sounds correct, not that the rules were not correct.

    I have quoted you the actual DISP rule on 3 years



    Selling an endowment policy because it was not of high enough value is a reason to complain, hence a 3 year time bar can be applied if OP sold the policy
    I'm familiar with DISP and understand the three year rule. Don't think it's quite how you meant but selling endowment because it was not of high enough value is not a reason to complain under DISP.....but t could be.
  • Nasqueron
    Nasqueron Posts: 9,191 Forumite
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    I'm familiar with DISP and understand the three year rule. Don't think it's quite how you meant but selling endowment because it was not of high enough value is not a reason to complain under DISP.....but t could be.


    Your responses seem to have no relation to what I post...


    Cancelling a policy is sufficient reason for a lender to use the 3 year time bar under DISP. Remember, it's not knowing that they could complain, but rather knowing they had reason to complain that triggers it.



    OP had an endowment, they state they knew it wasn't performing well enough (so they meet the criteria that they were aware of a reason to complain), they sold the policy (again meeting the criteria) and many years have gone by since then. Even if the policy was sold by someone who was regulated at the time, it'll be barred as OP will have received letters explaining the shortfall projections, prompting them to sell.



    Any which way, Dunstonh is an IFA fully versed in the rules of time bars, endowments etc and as he's said the complaint is most likely going to be time barred, not sure why you need to argue this.
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