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Endownment policy claims?

15 replies

Wolfgirl · 09/01/2007 10:26

Hi everyone. We have left this far too late, and not even sure we will get anywhere. Between my husband and myself we have 3 policies, all with different companies, that are in shortfall. Has anyone gone through the claiming procedure, and if so, were you successfull, was it a headache/nighmare/time consuming? Which company did you use, or which company can anyone recommend? One last question regarding their fees - would it be true to say that the higher the charges the better the service, and how do you know if a company is good and will battle on your behalf properly?

questions, questions, questions. Any adivce/help would be great.

OP posts:
nuttygirl · 09/01/2007 16:54

I used to investigate endowment claims. TBH the companies who advertise on tv and charge a fee are pretty useless IMO. It's just as easy to write to the company who sold you the policies yourself and it's free. If you're not satisfied with the outcome you can go to the financial ombudsman service (FOS) who will look at the case and see whether the company came to a fair decision. Doing it yourself is free and it's no more difficult (and often much easier) than using a claims company. Most of the claims company simply act as an extra stop in the postage system IMO, they generally receive the stuff the company would send you and then send it on for you to fill out. (or send their version of it). If you are having any difficulty filling in any questionnaire you get sent ring FOS, it's free.

tallulah · 09/01/2007 17:09

We claimed on ours following free advice on (I believe) the Which? website. They had a template for a letter which basically told you on what grounds you could claim. We thought they'd turn us down because we had no written proof but they accepted our version of events. Basically the salesman told us that it would pay off our mortgage and give us a nice lump sum on top which we thought would be ideal timing for our DDS wedding as she would be 24 when the policy matured. I remember him coming round quite vividly, even though it was a long time ago.

The company didn't argue and we accepted their offer of a little over £4k (it was only a small policy). With hindsight I wonder if we were supposed to haggle a bit, but I thought the offer was fair and was quite happy with it. Didn't take long either.

I certainly wouldn't bother asking someone else to do it for you. They can't get any more than you would yourself and you have to pay them.

cornishpasty · 09/01/2007 22:13

We also used the letter from the Which website - i found it really helpful endowment help .
I would do it yourself i found it very easy and not too time consuming. I was worried about doing it ourselves and kept putting it off, but Which really helped and we got the outcome we wanted. Go for it - we're so glad we did.

emsiewill · 09/01/2007 22:27

One thing I would say is DO NOT USE ANY OF THE ENDOWMENT CLAIMS COMPANIES TO DO THIS (sorry to shout!).

Most of them are just rip off merchants and do more or less nothing for their % of your compensation (up to 50% I have seen).

Until 2 weeks ago I worked for a company that deals with claims on behalf of the life companies - so sorting out the complaint from the initial letter, investigating what went on at the time the policy was sold (what was your "attitude to risk", did you have other policies, did you understand how the policy worked, were you shown an illustration etc, etc), if we felt that the policy had been missold, then we would do a calculation to find out if the customer had lost out financially because of having an endowment policy.

If you use the templates from the Which? website, you will be able to do it yourselves, and won't have to share your compensation with a bunch of shysters who, on the whole don't have a clue.

Rant over, let me know if you have any questions.

cat64 · 09/01/2007 22:30

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn

Wolfgirl · 10/01/2007 12:00

Hi there emsiewill, and everyone. Thank you so much for responding - its been great to read your testimonies. I have to confess that yesterday I did ring and start procedures with a claims company who charge 10% plus VAT. However, I was not happy with this move, and am just so glad you have encouraged me to do the complaint myself. So I will retract my application to them. I dont subscribe to Which? and so am wondering how to get access to their suggested standard letter. Any ideas?

emsiewill, could you tell me how my circumstances would fair? My first endownment I am confident will gain a win, because I was a VERY naieve single 23 year old (am a few years on now and much wiser LOL. I dont remember much about the sale, but do not remember them offering me other options. I have to say that the policy was doing exceptionally well until it got taken over by Norwich Union, and now has a big shortfall. The second endownment was only taken out in 1997, but on the back end of my first policy doing so well, I took a 2nd endownment. The FA agreed that their policy would do just as well if not better, and advised of an endownment, BUT! did tell me about repayments and compared this to endownments. That is my potential downfall here, that she did tell me of the repayment option, and I did understand (by then) how endowments worked - ish.

So, do you think I may have a case for both - bearing in mind both policies are for tiny amounts - one is in shortfall for £3600, the other about £10k.

many thanks again to you all.

OP posts:
Wolfgirl · 10/01/2007 12:05

Hi cornishpasty
have just clicked on the link you supplied and I managed to get into it. Cant do it from work here, but have forwarded it to my home, so will work on it tonight.

Bless you and thanks.

OP posts:
Lorina · 10/01/2007 12:15

I have claimed and won . We got £4500 in compensation .

We just did it on our own, its pretty easy . You dont have to write a complicated letter explaining everything. They just send you a form and you fill it in. It is a long form,several pages, but its not tricky ,all the questions are straightforward.

But compensation is for mis-selling. The dont make up the shortfall. The compensation will probably be less than the shortfall.

Its quite a long process too ,they take ages to get back to you.

Good luck!

weepootleflump · 10/01/2007 13:08

Can you only make a claim if the endowment policy was taken against a mortgage? I have an endowment which I was undoubtedly mis-sold but it was only for a savings plan- not necessarily to pay off a mortgage.

fishie · 10/01/2007 13:15

i think i can't complain - mine was taken out before august 1988 and i don't have the associated mortgage any more.

Wolfgirl · 10/01/2007 14:28

Hi weepootleflump
from my limited research, it appears that it should be linked to a mortgage - leastways it makes your claim stronger. However, Im sure I have read that people have claimed even when the policy did not link to a mortgage. I.e property sold before policy matured.

Cornishpasty provided a Which? link above, not sure you can use it, but have a go. See what Which? advise.


OP posts:
Gingerbear · 10/01/2007 14:36

Weepootle - nope, it doesn't have to be against a mortgage. I had a similar endowment type savings plan and had compensation for misselling.

weepootleflump · 10/01/2007 14:36

Thanks Wolfgirl

nuttygirl · 10/01/2007 22:43

Fishie - you should still be able to complain. I know the insurance companies I have worked for looked into pre 1988 policies in much the same way as the later ones.

fishie · 11/01/2007 08:53

THANK YOU nuttygirl, i have dug out last letter and have until july to complain so will get on with it.

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