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FSA won’t release legal advice over long stop

The FSA has refused to release details of legal advice it received over the 15-year long stop, arguing that it could be used against the Financial Ombudsman Service in any future judicial review.

In April, the regulator conducted an internal review of its decision to deny a freedom of information request for the FSA legal counsel’s opinion on the long stop. It concluded that the decision to withhold the information was correct.

A letter from FSA information protection officer Philip Robinson, seen by Money Marketing, states: “Public disclosure of the FSA’s advice would be likely to be prejudicial to the FOS in any future judicial review of their decisions in that possible arguments against the FOS’s position would be available to their opponents while their opponents would not be obliged to reveal their legal advice to the FOS.”

Money Marketing revealed last week that the joint committee on human rights chairman Andrew Dismore has written to City minister Lord Myners demanding to know why the FSA will not introduce a 15-year long stop for advisers.

Highclere Financial Services partner Alan Lakey says: “This is a substantial admission because the purpose of the judicial rev-iew would be to determine the lawfulness of the decision or action taken by the FOS. The FSA is clearly stating that the release of opinion from their counsel would prove damaging to the FOS in assembling their arguments within a judicial review.”

The FSA was unavailable for comment.

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Comments

There are 2 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Legal Advice
    At last an admission about the advise they hold.
    The door is now open to push this long stop through.But why the Govt. does not stop wasting yet more tax payers money in fighting this only they know. Except wasting our money is what they are very good at.

  2. Defending the indefensible
    Surely if as we suspect the legal advice is that ignoring the 15 year longstop is illegal/a breach of Human Rights, then any individua who continue to be inmvolved in trying to use our FSA fees and/or Govt money to prevent thr truth getting out can be held personally liable?
    If it is a brach of Human Rights and an individual is knowingley involved in that breach, surely it is personally liability and not just coporate?

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