Claims companies have developed an unfortunate reputation. Questionable business practises and an unhealthy passion for, what some would call, extorting money from all areas of the financial services sector have made it nobody’s darling.
This is almost a tragedy because claims companies do have a place in society. The right to make an honest claim for compensation should not depend on one’s ability to hire a top notch lawyer so as a consumer, the arrival of claims companies, should have been a good thing. With the abolition of legal aid for personal injury claims these companies looked to fill a gap in the market which rapidly accelerated the rise of the industry. Regrettably, the intent of some of these companies changed and resulted in an emerging claims culture that until then, we were only used to seeing in places like the United States.
Recent reports have suggested that a deadline on PPI claims is coming so naturally, claims companies are now looking for opportunities elsewhere. The question is, are we next? Are people really not paying attention to our beloved standard disclaimer: “You may not get back your original investment”?
The world of investing can be complicated and providing financial advice is not an exact science. Therefore defining what is mis-sold advice is very subjective but the reality is, this is yet another pressure point that’s going to force change and a review of an already strained sector. As an industry, now more than ever, we must provide a transparent service, more accountability and a more client centric product focus.
While “You may not get back your original investment” is a clear statement, it also mustn’t be hidden behind.