A class action against the FCA by investors in the EEA Life Settlements fund has reached £60m after 500 claimants joined the effort.
The number of investors jumped from 90 at the end of January to 514 by the deadline of 14 February.
The claimants have a total of £47m invested in the fund, and have added simple interest at 8 per cent over three and a half years to the claim, taking its total value to £60m.
The EEA Life Settlements fund has been experiencing difficulties since December 2011, when the fund was first suspended after the FSA labelled life settlement funds as “high risk, toxic products”.
Peter Lihou, who founded the group in February 2014, says the regulator’s statements were “factually incorrect” and caused a run on the funds.
He argues the regulator infringed human rights law by denying investors access to their funds.
The group will send a formal letter to the FCA setting out the claim, and if a settlement is not reached with the regulator it will take the case to the European Court of Human Rights.
Lihou says: “I am delighted that we have passed the 500 mark. Our lawyer is currently drafting the proposal to the FCA and depending on the regulator’s response, we will have four weeks to send our case to the European court.”
An FCA spokesman says: “The FCA remains of the view that our intervention in this market was justified.
“The FSA issued the guidance for consultation to address urgent concerns about the growing risk of consumer detriment posed by the traded life policy investments market.”