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MP wins debate to put the case for appeals against watchdog…

Nick Harvey, the Liberal Democrat MP fighting to save his local IFA&#39s business, has won the right to an adjournment debate on retrospective appeals against the Financial Ombudsman Service.

He will chair a discussion between MPs on retrospective appeals against the FOS with particular reference to IFAs.

Harvey raised the issue to highlight the plight of one of his constituents whose business faces closure because it cannot afford to pay an award made by the watchdog.

Building Societies Association spokeswoman Rachel Blackmore says the BSA believes firms should have a right to have the principles behind a decision reviewed by an independent body or the right to refer significant legal issues to court.

She says: “We do not take the position that the customer&#39s award should be overturned. We favour a relatively speedy process without cost to the customer. We think the outcome should be one that the FOS and the firm would be required to have due regard to, although not &#39binding&#39 in the strict sense and agree with Mr Harvey on the principle the system requires change.”

FOS spokeswoman Alison Hoyland says: “The process is certainly designed to allow the maximum amount of explanation. The majority of cases are resolved through mediation and adjudication. We are particularly careful to warn people to bring all the information at the time a decision is made because afterwards it will be too late.”

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