Questions of Cash: Ombudsman offers hope for mis-sell claim


I read your advice to JB, Folkestone (see top related link) on a mis-sold endowment policy.

Q. I read your advice to JB, Folkestone (see top related link) on a mis-sold endowment policy. I had a similar claim over a Royal & SunAlliance endowment policy - I was not told it was share-based and risky. RSA says there is a 15-year limit on claims and, as my policy was taken out in June 1988, any claim for mis-selling expired in June 2003. But I only became aware of the likely shortfall when the policy was reviewed last year. What is this 15-year rule?
NH, Sussex.

A. RSA is relying on an interpretation of the statute of limitations, which provides a 15-year limit on legal action from the date of a contract. RSA started applying the 15-year rule in May last year. "We must be fair to all our policyholders and ensure that we do not pay out compensation where legally we are not obliged to do so because this would diminish the fund available to benefit other policyholders," says RSA's spokesman, Rob Skinner. The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) does not accept this view of the law and says it can determine cases referred to it pre-dating the 15 years. The FOS applies time limits of six years from the date of contract, or three years from the date a person became aware or should have been aware of the consequences - on which basis you are in time.

The RSA spokesman says: "We recognise the limitations issue is a point of contention and are in discussions with the Financial Services Authority (FSA) and FOS about it." But David Creswell, a spokesman for FOS, says: "We don't think we are in discussion. We make decisions. Our rules do not have a 15-year longstop. The FSA has confirmed this and the 15-year longstop cannot be used by firms not to consider cases. This is a legislative underpin." So, you should definitely appeal to the FSO. However, you should also be aware that endowments sold in June 1988 were subject to less specific controls on selling practices than are more recent transactions and this could damage your chances of success.

Q. I have a Tessa with the Co-operative Bank maturing in March and want advice on how to reinvest the money. Co-op is offering a Tessa-Only Isa, but is this my best option? I don't want to invest directly in shares.
PS, Nottingham.

A. Stephen Humphreys, the head of financial services at the accountant Moore Stephens, says that Toisas - Tessa-Only Isas - have a huge benefit over Tessas because they do not require a fixed-term commitment, but still provide a tax-free investment. "Most investors should make use of a Toisa even if they subsequently decide to cash some or all of the funds soon after," he says. The best Toisa rates, according to the website MoneyFacts, are 5.75 per cent with West Bromwich Building Society, fixed until 31 March 2009, for a minimum balance of £1,000. The best rate for instant access and smaller balances is Intelligent Finance, at 4.6 per cent. You should check penalty terms for early encashment.

Q. I have read the Inland Revenue's booklets about resident and non-domicile status, but I'm confused. I understand that any money other than pure capital brought into the country is taxable, but is it taxed at a graduated rate; can individuals who are resident/non-domiciled deduct personal allowance; can a husband and wife be allowed the resident/non-domicile status individually or separately?
JM, London.

A. Mike Warburton, of the accountant Grant Thornton, says: "If you are non-domiciled, but resident in the UK, you are taxable on the remittance basis for overseas earnings, income and gains. You are subject to tax in the normal way for UK source earnings, income and gains. If you remit overseas income or gains to the UK, it is added into your overall income and, therefore, taxed at a graduated rate according to the tax rate that then applies: typically 20 per cent or 40 per cent. If you are remitting pure capital, this is not taxable if that capital is from an account which has not received income or gains realised since you became UK resident.

Individuals who are resident, but not domiciled in the UK can take off their normal personal allowances against overseas income as for UK income. If the overseas income has suffered tax in that country there may be relief available against double tax under the applicable double tax treaty. Spouses are not treated in the same way for tax purposes and are judged on their own merits. Since 1973 a wife does not automatically assume the domicile of her husband, but is judged on her domicile under the same criteria as her husband: essentially the domicile of her father (a domicile of origin), or a domicile of choice if that has subsequently changed. The rules on domicile and residence are being reviewed by the Inland Revenue and we expect them to change."

Independent Partners; request a free guide on NISAs from Hargreaves Lansdown

Life and Style
tech

Sales of the tablet are set to fall again say analysts

News
A Brazilian wandering spider
news

World's most lethal spider found under a bunch of bananas

Life and Style
fashion

British supermodel and hitmaker join forces to launch a 'huge song'

Life and Style
gaming

I Am Bread could actually a challenging and nuanced title

PROMOTED VIDEO
Sport
Mario Balotelli pictured in the win over QPR
footballInternet reacts to miss shocker for Liverpool striker
News
people
Voices
Sol Campbell near his home in Chelsea
voices
News
i100
News
Kimi the fox cub
newsBurberry under fire from animal rights group - and their star, Kimi
Sport
Fans of Palmeiras looks dejected during the match between Palmeiras and Santos
footballPalmeiras fan killed trying to 'ambush' bus full of opposition supporters
Arts and Entertainment
filmsIt's nearly a wrap on Star Wars: Episode 7, producer reveals
Life and Style
fashion
News
i100
News
<p>Jonathan Ross</p>
<p>Jonathan Ross (or Wossy, as he’s affectionately known) has been on television and radio for an extraordinarily long time, working on a seat in the pantheon of British presenters. Hosting Friday Night with Jonathan Ross for nine years, Ross has been in everything from the video game Fable to Phineas and Ferb. So it’s probably not so surprising that Ross studied at Southampton College of Art (since rebranded Southampton Solent), a university known nowadays for its media production courses.</p>
<p>However, after leaving Solent, Ross studied History at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, now part of the UCL, a move that was somewhat out of keeping with the rest of his career. Ross was made a fellow of the school in 2006 in recognition of his services to broadcasting.</p>
TV

Rumours that the star wants to move on to pastures new

News
i100
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    Customer Service Executive / Inbound Customer Service Agent

    £18 - 23k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Customer Service Executiv...

    ASP.NET Web Developer / .NET Developer

    £60 - 65k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a ASP.NET Web Developer / ....

    Operational Risk Manager - Asset Management

    £60,000 - £80,000: Saxton Leigh: Our client is an leading Asset Manager based...

    Project Coordinator - 12 month contract

    £27000 - £32000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our large charity ...

    Day In a Page

    Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

    'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

    If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
    James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
    Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

    Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

    Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
    Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

    Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

    Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
    How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

    How to dress with authority

    Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
    New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

    New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

    'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
    Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

    Tim Minchin interview

    For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
    Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
    Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

    Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

    Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
    Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

    How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

    'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

    Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

    Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
    Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

    Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

    After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
    Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

    Terry Venables column

    Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
    The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

    Michael Calvin's Inside Word

    Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past