View more on these topics

MPs back Ombudsman’s call to compensate Equitable Life victims

MPs on the public administration committee have backed the Parliamentary Ombudsman’s call for the Government to compensate victims of Equitable Life.

The committee also supported Ombudsman Ann Abraham’s call for a full and “unreserved” apology from the public bodies responsible for overseeing Equitable Life with MPs urging the Government to accept the findings of maladministration.

Failure to accept the Abraham’s findings would “seriously undermine the Ombudsman’s office and the ability to learn lessons from the Equitable Life affair” the committee found.

The MPs backed the Ombudsman’s proposals for an independent compensation scheme administered by a tribunal, but argued that the Government should not sign a blank cheque and compensation should put policyholders back into the position that they would have been in had the maladministration not taken place.

The committee rejected the idea of only compensating victims that are experiencing financial hardship as it argued this is not a matter of charity, but it concluded the Government should prioritise making interim payments to those in difficulty.

The MPs also called for a review of the way in which serious failures of this kind are investigated in the future by the Government, as they say the failure to establish a comprehensive and fit for purpose investigation has caused delay and frustration for policyholders.

Liberal Democrat Shadow Chancellor Vince Cable says: “After months of dragging his feet Gordon Brown must now apologise to policyholders and take action to deal with financial compensation.

“In a week when the Government once again delayed its response to Equitable Life policyholders, this report is another damning indictment of regulatory failure.

“The Government should apologise for the years of delay, anxiety and unanswered questions suffered by policyholders.

“Ministers have not only completely failed to regulate properly, but have proven themselves utterly incapable of establishing a proper investigation into this affair.”


Recommended

Will all roads lead to Omo?

The Personal Accounts Delivery Authority’s consultation paper on how it will handle the decumulation process seems to favour the open market option for account holders. Commentators say if Omo is likely to be the default option for personal accounts, this could pave the way for it to become the default for all schemes.

Santander to axe 1900 jobs

Santander has revealed it is to cut 1900 jobs across its Abbey, Alliance & Leicester and Bradford & Bingley Savings arms.

FSA warns public over firm

The FSA has issued a consumer warning about an unregulated firm, Pure Money Limited, which has been offering mortgage, insurance and investment advice. The regulator is urging anyone who has arranged a mortgage, remortgage, insurance or investment through the company to contact the FSA.

Why your clients need some tough love

In any relationship that matters, professional or personal, you should be upfront with someone if you think they’re making a decision or doing something they might later regret. Being honest with someone and having their best interests at heart, however hard the message, is key to building trust in any relationship. So how does this […]

Newsletter

News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up

Comments

    Leave a comment

    Close

    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm

    Email: customerservices@moneymarketing.com