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Endowment time bar stays at three years

23 July 2008

Complaints of endowment policy mis-selling by solicitors continue to be accepted for up to three years after the client was warned of a possible shortfall, the Law Society of Scotland has reminded solicitors.

The Society and the Scottish Legal Services Ombudsman have noticed in a number of cases recently that clients have been given inaccurate information about the Society’s time bar policy in relation to complaints about endowment policies.

Now the Society has asked client relations partners to remember that where an endowment complaint is the issue, the Society’s time bar policy is that a complaint will be accepted within three years of the client receiving from the product provider a second “traffic light” or warning letter giving an indication of a potential shortfall. If the complainer does not raise matters with the Society within that period, the policy is to treat the complaint as time barred.

The policy will continue to apply after 1 October when the time bar applying to complaints generally reduces from two years to one year, in line with the rule proposed for the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission.