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Santander removes Highclere from broker panel

Alan Lakey 160 byline

Santander has removed Highclere Financial Services from the Abbey for Intermediaries broker panel, accusing partner Alan Lakey of using abusive language towards its employees.

Lakey was informed that his fast-track functionality was being removed following an audit of the cases he was submitting on 29 November.

He then sent two emails to the lender about the decision on 29 and 30 November. As a result of the language used in both emails, the decision was made to terminate Highclere’s involvement with immediate effect.

In a letter to Lakey, who is also a council member on the Association of Professional Financial Advisers, Santander says: “As a responsible employer Santander must support its employees and ensure that employees are not subject to abuse, whether written or verbal, within the workplace.”

A Santander spokesman says: “Mr Lakey is fully aware of the reasons why we have removed him from our panel. We have nothing further to add.”

But Lakey claims he decided to stop using AfI’s broker panel due to its lack of flexibility around lending criteria.

Lakey says: “I have endured six months of idiotic and unacceptable rigid underwriting and precise attention to pointless detail to the ultimate disservice of myself and my clients.

“The total failure to accept any responsibility and its total inability to allow me any type of discourse with someone who can make decisions has led my clients to ask me why they have been put with this lender.

“There comes a point where you reach the straw that broke the camel’s back. The email I received led me to react the way I did.”

Four brokers have been removed from Santander’s panel this year for reasons relating to professional standards.

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