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Mis selling of Bonds to the elderly

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I wonder whether anyone out there knows of an elderly person who has been persuaded by a financial adviser to purchase a Bond, only to find out that it was a wholly inapproriate investment? My mot… Read More
melanie789 Avatar
8y, 2m agoPosted 8 years, 2 months ago
I wonder whether anyone out there knows of an elderly person who has been persuaded by a financial adviser to purchase a Bond, only to find out that it was a wholly inapproriate investment?

My mother wanted to invest the proceeds of her house in a high interest fixed term deposit account, but was persuaded by 2 Cooperative Insurance Salesmen to opt for a Norwich Union Bond. She was 85 at the time, and made it absolutely clear to the salesmen that she didn't want any risky investment, and that her money had to be absolutely safe as it was needed to pay for her care home. She also specified that she may need to get her hands on the money at short notice if there was a change of circumstances. I was present at the meeting, and she was given these assurances, including one that she would receive 101% of her investment back in the event of her death.

Sadly, my Mum passed away earlier this month, and when I notified Norwich Union of this, I was horrified to find that the value of her investment had dropped by nearly £12,000. It seems the guaranteed 101% return on death was 101% of the value on death, not the original investment. Norwich Union told me that they had been instructed by the Co-op salesmen to invest her money in a 5-10 year bond, purchasing cautious and balanced stocks & shares.

As far as I am concerned, it is completely inappropriate to have sold a 5-10 year bond to an 85 year old. Furthermore, I am very angry that the salesmen took advantage of her, knowing that she was not in the best of health, and that she completely trusted in the advice they gave. I find it hard to believe that they made such a risky investment, having been told specifically not to. I understand from Googling, that this type of practice by financial advisers is very common - because of the high commission they earn. Frankly, I think it's a disgrace, and I have lodged a formal complaint with the Co-op, and with Norwich Union. In the event they don't repay her investment, I have engaged a solicitor to present a case to the ombudsman and county court if necessary.

Has anyone else had a similar experience, or know of anyone that has? Please warn your elderly relatives that this is quite common, and if they have money to invest, to steer well clear unless they have a good chance of surviving at least 5-10 years. I do wish I had had a chance to read the paperwork before my Mum signed and returned it, but unfortunately I was out of the country. Whether the Co-op will agree this was a case of mis selling remains to be seen. My solicitor is convinced it is. I really don't think any reasonable person would expect an 85 year old to understand all the jargon contained in it - hell, I don't even understand it. I'd be interested to hear opinions on this, particularly if you know of anyone else similarly affected.
melanie789 Avatar
8y, 2m agoPosted 8 years, 2 months ago
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banned 1 Like #1
I think you will have a good case if she asked for her capital to be protected (which it seems like she did). good luck!

also she should have stipulated the term length... she insisted on instant access so they should have given her an account that allowed instant access but a bonus on maturity.
banned#2
You will obviously be quite emotionally attached to this as the passing of your mother was very recent.

I would advise getting in touch with someone like Don't Get Done Get Dom from BBC One or Watchdog or similar.

A lot of solicitors do 30min free consultations, no obligations, You could take this forward to them and get their point of view?

Best of luck whatever happens.
1 Like #3
I'm so sorry to hear of your Mum passing. This must be such a difficult time for you.

And I'm sure finding out this bond wasn't what you expected it to be must be so painful because it feels like your Mum was disrespected in some way by these sales people.

Honestly, I don't know anything about thesse financial circumstances myself, but I can understand your feelings regarding this.

I'm glad you have employed a solicitor so they can at least see whether your Mum was treated unfairly in any sense in the eyes of the law.

So many financial investments have suffered in recent months due to the current financial circumstances. We have investments for our son and they are only worth a fraction of the value we have actually put into them at the moment.

I do hope everything works out for you x x x
banned 1 Like #4
bykergrove
I think you will have a good case if she asked for her capital to be protected (which it seems like she did). good luck!.


ClarityofMind
I'm so sorry to hear of your Mum passing. This must be such a difficult time for you.

And I'm sure finding out this bond wasn't what you expected it to be must be so painful because it feels like your Mum was disrespected in some way by these sales people.
I do hope everything works out for you x x x


Rep to you both for your constructive help and not lowering to heartless comments.
1 Like #5
exactly the same thing happened wth my gran-her savings ended up almost worthless-my mum tried for many years to fight the advisors who sold the bonds but got nowhere because,the sad truth is that they can say they were told anything after someone has passed away.

they will say they told her the risks and she accepted them and you have no way to prove otherwise.

I am very sorry to hear of your loss-my mother passed away in november and I still miss her terribly-obviously the money my gran lost would have passed to her and then to me and my brothers but our legal advice is not to bother fighting anymore because we will never prove that my gran was badly advised.
#6
Barky, I am also very sorry for your loss.
We may be in a slightly different position, as I was present when the salesmen told her this, and my partner also heard some of the conversation. At the end of the day is suppose it comes down to who the ombudsman or court believes. In light of the current general feeling towards bankers and financial experts, lets hope we get an adjudicator who feels the same!!
#7
melanie789
Barky, I am also very sorry for your loss.
We may be in a slightly different position, as I was present when the salesmen told her this, and my partner also heard some of the conversation. At the end of the day is suppose it comes down to who the ombudsman or court believes. In light of the current general feeling towards bankers and financial experts, lets hope we get an adjudicator who feels the same!!


Good luck Mel hope it works out for you x
#8
Thanks all, much appreciated!
Mel

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