Financial mis-selling occurs when someone sells you a financial product that does not meet your needs, possibly by not providing enough information on risks and features, or suggesting products that don’t align with your circumstances.
It could happen for various reasons such as an incorrect explanation of risks or features or improper advice about products not appropriate to you based on personal circumstances. The point is, mis-selling in the financial services industry has long been an issue, leading to large sums being lost and drawing intense scrutiny from both the public and regulatory authorities alike.
What are Mis-sold Products?
Mis-selling can involve more complex schemes involving financial institutions selling inappropriate or risky products without properly understanding customer requirements, including investment products, profit bonds, company stocks and managed portfolios.
As new products enter the market, consumers need to be mindful of any associated risks when making their purchases and take measures to prevent mis-selling from taking place. If you’re new to the market, click here to learn more about the scams people play. Never buy from salespeople who aggressively pitch products to you; agents who receive commission could have strong incentives to sell a product which they think can earn them the most money.
Do not fall prey to people promising you constant success and superior performance from their product; even if they claim this will outdo their competitors in the market. Doing so may make you feel pressured into purchasing it when it is not necessary, leading to financial miscalculations.
Financial services providers can use several tactics to avoid mis-selling and build trust with their customers, including creating an environment of transparency and honesty, engaging regularly with customers to discuss products and services offered, as well as responding promptly to any customer concerns or complaints received.
How Do I Know If I’ve Been Mis-sold a Product?
Regulated advisers often sell you financial products, and it is their duty to ensure the product they recommend meets your specific needs and understand its associated risks. A sure way to detect whether a financial product was mis-sold to you is by asking questions of your adviser, or feeling they have not properly conveyed those risks to you. If this has happened to you, an excellent way of telling is if they failed to fully explain its implications to you.
Mis-sold financial products often include interest rate swap agreements, caps and collars and business protection against changes in foreign exchange rates. Because such products can be complex to navigate through, it may be hard for you to assess whether they’re the appropriate solution for your business or not.
As an example, if you are a small business owner who mis-sold an interest rate swap agreement, this could cause you to incur financial loss since the product failed to properly explain its risks and how it might work in the future. It also may mean paying additional fees or making exit charges that could have been avoided altogether.
Asserting that a financial product was mis-sold to you can help determine whether you were misled. Ask your adviser, broker or end provider questions about the product they sold you if you feel misled; if their responses don’t satisfy you then file a formal complaint so they may address your concern and resolve it quickly.
If the problem you’re encountering cannot be solved or has escalated beyond your control, legal assistance may provide your best opportunity for seeking compensation for losses suffered.
If you believe you have been the victim of financial mis-selling, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team and discuss the circumstances of your claim – they’re here to help you claim compensation! Time limits on claiming vary depending on which products or services were involved as well as whether any attempts to self-resolve were unsuccessful.
What Can I Do?
Trading standards may help if any issues arise with mis-sold products or services – they won’t necessarily solve your problem, but can stop any traders from taking advantage of you in future and even recover costs in cases of mis-selling that have made life more difficult or caused undue stress and inconvenience for you.
Citizens Advice (https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/) can also provide invaluable assistance and advice if you are considering filing a claim against a seller, including helping to establish how much of an award you should claim for.
Finding a law firm specialized in financial mis-selling claims may also be advantageous. Such firms typically work on a no win a fee basis and will help ensure you obtain your rightful funds.
For instance, if you were mis-sold PPI – designed to cover repayments when an individual cannot due to illness or unemployment – and were misled into purchasing it, you may be eligible for mis-selling claims under FCA guidelines. Financial services must be sold in an ethical and transparent way with risks fully disclosed before any product can be offered for sale.
How Much Can I Claim?
Financial mis-selling can happen in numerous ways, from failing to explain all of the risks and features of a product correctly, or suggesting one which does not suit your situation, to being recommended one that’s simply inappropriate. If you believe you have mis-sold a financial product, please reach out to one of our specialist solicitors located in Birmingham, Bristol, and Cardiff London Manchester Taunton to see if compensation may be available to you.
Consumers can lodge complaints directly with an independent complaints company or Ombudsman; however, many don’t realize these options exist or don’t believe making a formal complaint will achieve anything tangible.
Whenever making a complaint, it is essential to gather as much evidence as possible in order to support your argument that any advice provided was unsuitable for your needs or provided by someone not qualified enough. Your solicitor can use this evidence against the advisor if needed in establishing that there has been malpractice on their part.
Your lawyer will assess the viability of your claim, providing advice on the most efficient means of moving forward and filing all required documents. If your claim is successful, you will be entitled to recover either all or at least some of what was mis-sold to you; either through an Ombudsman or through court proceedings.