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Can I claim for unacceptable delay in communication resulting in financial loss

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Savings & Investments
12 replies 952 views
WelshyyyyyWelshyyyyy Forumite
5 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Savings & Investments
Hi, does anyone know if it's possible to "claim" against an investment company due to an unacceptable delay (in my opinion) in communication on their part leading to financial loss due to unit prices falling ?
Acting on behalf of my elderly mother, I want to cash in her investment bond (after tracking the unit price for some time I felt that this was a good time). I emailed the company on the 13th February asking "Regarding the above Bond number, due to circumstances I need to cash in this investment
Could you please confirm the process for this (e.g. is a formal letter requesting the funds required?
Currently (as of 12/2/19) the Bond is worth £xxxx, will I get the full amount (based on the unit price at the time) or will there be a MVR applied as stated in your literature"

I expected a reply within a day or so, what I got was an immediate auto reply stating
"Thank you for your email. This has been acknowledged and forwarded to the servicing area for actioning. Please note we are unable to reply via email due to data protection issues, all responses will be sent by post"

No response was received for a week, I chased again via email on the 21st and then received an email on the 25th February stating
"With reference to your e-mail of 21 February 2019, we trust you have now received our letter of 22nd February, outlining our requirements and enclosing an encashment form.
There is no MVA being applied to encashments at the present time.
Please find attached a further copy of the encashment form"

I (my mother) then received correspondence in the post on the same day, so I had to drive to see her, get her to fill in the forms, take them to a local bank (to confirm identity) then I returned the forms in the postage paid envelope they provided. Currently I am waiting for this to be processed, however since my initial email (until possibly tomorrow's unit price being the final figure), there has been a gap of 15 days which has seen the unit price fall (which I thought might happen, hence the request for the encashment on the 13th). This has resulted in approx £700 loss, do I have any valid claim against the company for the delay or is it just a case of this is their process, I appreciate the need to do things securely via post but I feel that their unnecessary delay in sending the documents to us has resulted in an unfair financial loss. I know that unit prices fall as well as rise before anyone says "I'm sure you wouldn't complain if it had gone up" 😊
Grateful for any advice, thanks
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Replies

  • HerbalusHerbalus Forumite
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    I don’t think you have a case.

    Firms don’t take instructions over email for very good reason. When forms have to be posted and then signed and sent back, it’s fundamentally incompatible with selling at any given hour that you’ve identified.

    Was there not a phone number that could have got you a quicker response?
  • BoGoFBoGoF Forumite
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    What made you expect a reply in a day or two?

    Sending an e-mail doesn't make you jump the queue.
  • ColdIronColdIron Forumite
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    If it had risen by approx £700 would you be complaining?
  • webjavedwebjaved Forumite
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    ColdIron wrote: »
    If it had risen by approx £700 would you be complaining?

    I don't think the OP would have complained.

    OP - surely there would have been a phone number for you to ring?
    Save £12k in 2019 #154 - £14,826.60/£12k
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  • lpgmlpgm Forumite
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    I presume you're dealing with someone like Aviva or Scottish Widows. The insurance companies are on the whole old-fashioned and painfully slow. I can't wait to be rid of what I call my 'legacy' investments.

    I did manage to get some compensation through the ombudsman from a financial adviser several years ago because of a 'communications' problem - but this small amount was for inconvenience rather than a specific financial loss.
  • dunstonhdunstonh Forumite
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    I expected a reply within a day or so, what I got was an immediate auto reply stating

    Your expectations were not appropriate. Your email would have gone into a work queue and that queue could be 10 or so days. A phone call would have been immediate (or as immediate as an insurance company call centre would be)

    do I have any valid claim against the company for the delay or is it just a case of this is their process,

    No you dont. They have acted within reasonable timescales for answering a written request. Plus, they are not responsible for you not getting the form filled quicker.
    I presume you're dealing with someone like Aviva or Scottish Widows. The insurance companies are on the whole old-fashioned and painfully slow. I can't wait to be rid of what I call my 'legacy' investments.

    Aviva are very good on investment bonds. They will take instructions over the phone if the payment is to a known bank account. Scottish Widows are poor.
    I can't wait to be rid of what I call my 'legacy' investments.

    That is the actually the phrase used in the industry too.
    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.
  • Thanks for the replies, I suppose I could have rung but in my business everything is done over email (audit trail) so I assumed this would be the best way to communicate rather than a phone call of which I would have no record of what was said. My issue is really over the excessive length of time for them to send me the encashment form, it is a Scottish firm and I have dealt with another similar Scottish firm recently and yes painfully slow.
  • Thanks for clarifying some points, I guess it's a lessons learned exercise, my company has to respond to all emails within 24 hours, I just assumed other companies would be similar
    Regarding your comment "they are not responsible for you not getting the form filled quicker" that was completed within 2 days after receiving it
  • lpgmlpgm Forumite
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    dunstonh wrote: »
    That is the actually the phrase used in the industry too.

    I probably picked it up from you then. :wink:
  • HerbalusHerbalus Forumite
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    Welshyyyyy wrote: »
    Thanks for the replies, I suppose I could have rung but in my business everything is done over email (audit trail) so I assumed this would be the best way to communicate rather than a phone call of which I would have no record of what was said. My issue is really over the excessive length of time for them to send me the encashment form, it is a Scottish firm and I have dealt with another similar Scottish firm recently and yes painfully slow.

    Phone calls are recorded on their side for the audit trail.

    Emails can be hacked and spoofed, so I’m surprised you think this is infallible.
This discussion has been closed.