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Abbey made FSA threat after fee error

Abbey has been forced to apologise to Abacus Assurance Financial for threatening FSA action against the broker for the return of money that it had incorrectly paid to another company.

Abbey paid AAFS principal Philip Salmon Vaughan’s proc-uration fee to an individual unconnected with Abacus annd then tried to recover the funds from Vaughan.

Vaughan was owed 1,155 by Abbey following a mort-gage deal completed last November but he discovered on December 20 that his fee had been paid to some- one in the Zurich Mortgage Network.

Abbey agreed on April 14 – five months after completion of the mortgage – to make the payment to Vaughan, pending a signature from a divisional director.

On April 30, Vaughan got a letter from Abbey saying he had a negative balance outstanding in his account and that he would be reported to the FSA if he did not pay Abbey 1,155.

Abbey has put the problem down to an admin error as the payment was incorrectly set up as a reclaim rather than a payment and says it is paying Vaughan.

Head of intermediary mortgages Jeff Scott says Abbey is working to improve its admin service.

Vaughan says: “Abbey is desperately trying to recover market share but I dread to think what is happening behind the scenes. It all seems calm on the surface but underneath it is chaos.”

Abbey media relations executive Sharon Makin says: “Abbey has fully investiga- ted this matter and would like to offer its apologies for the confusion and inconvenience caused.”


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