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ombudsman news

issue 11

November 2001

about this issue of ombudsman news

N2 - the date when the Financial Services and Markets Act came into effect - has arrived. Our intention was always to make the transition as seamless as possible so if - for most of you - it is pretty much "business as usual" then we consider things have very much gone to plan. However, new rules are now in place and in the next investment edition of ombudsman news, we plan to report on the effect they appear to be having on the disputes referred to us. Meanwhile, this edition brings you up to date on the position concerning the calculation of redress where investors have received windfall benefits as a result of demutualisation. We also provide case studies illustrating our approach following the outcome of the Needler Financial Services v Taber test case.

In response to enquiries from some firms, we include an item on our approach to complaints about investment performance, and how the new rules may affect it. Case studies illustrate our approach and the difficulties we can encounter in establishing whether such cases fall within our jurisdiction and whether liability exists. We have also included a section about alleged guarantees of investment performance.

Finally, we provide our usual round-up of recent investment cases - the majority relating to mortgage endowment disputes, which still dominate our caseload. Some of these cases touch on issues raised in earlier editions of ombudsman news, but I believe there is value in reinforcing the message about our approach.

As always - we welcome your comments about ombudsman news and we are pleased to consider any suggestions for future editions.

Walter Merricks, chief ombudsman

ombudsman news gives general information on the position at the date of publication. It is not a definitive statement of the law, our approach or our procedure.

The illustrative case studies are based broadly on real-life cases, but are not precedents. Individual cases are decided on their own facts.