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Lifesearch says clients feel betrayed and will shun Pru

The overwhelming majority of clients of national broker Lifesearch say they will never buy another Prudential product after the recent debacle over its protection business.

The firm says 93 per cent of clients affected by the Pru move last month to raise premiums and remove guarantees on pipeline critical-illness business say they will never use the provider for protection again.

But perhaps even more significantly, 87 per cent say they will not use the Pru for any area of business.

No one voiced confidence in Pru and those who did not say no outright still said it was highly unlikely that they would ever again use the Pru.

Lifesearch says the reaction of its clients is likely to be indicative of the UK public at large. In an industry based solely on trust, the broker says that clients have simply had enough of companies going back on their word.

It is estimated there are 50,000 cases which have been affected by the Pru&#39s move.

Some of the comments from clients, when asked how they felt about the provider, included “sheer bully boy tactics” and “I felt betrayed that the Prudential were unwilling to meet their side of the deal”.

At the time of going to press, Lifesearch had asked 45 of its 200 clients affected by the decision but says it plans to complete the survey.

Spokesman Kevin Carr says: “The public is fed up with insurers moving the goalposts. Anyone who is aware of what the Pru has done will think twice about using it again. These findings are a fair reflection of public opinion and the public has a long memory.”

Pru spokesman Darragh Leeson says: “I trust it is independent but, not having seen a copy of the research or the basis of the findings, we cannot comment.”

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