He has received clarification from the Information Commissioner’s office that the High Court has ruled that the information falls under absolute exemption rules under the Freedom of Information Act and does not have to be disclosed.
The case stems from a FoI request by the IFADU in January 2005. The Information Commission ruled in August 2007 that the FSA had to name the mortgage endowment providers which misused Lautro projections in setting premiums, meaning clients were given unrealistically high maturity figures. Advisers claim the projections led to misselling payouts for shortfalls that were exaggerated or non-existent.
The FSA appealed against the decision but in October 2008 the Information Tribunal rejected the regulator’s argument that the IC had no right to order the publication of the names of busin- esses involved.
The FSA launched a High Court appeal which was heard in April. Owen says the only way this can now be revisited is if there is a public outcry. He says: “This is not about protecting the life offices but protecting the FSA. Why should IFAs have to suffer the misselling costs of policies where the Lautro projections were mispriced by the provider?”