The FSA has publicly censured Mandrake Associates Limited (MAL) and prohibited its director from customer functions in financial services for poor handling of mortgage endowment complaints.
The firm failed to operate effective complaints procedures for mortgage endowments, did not provide adequate resources to deal with complaints and did not train its personnel to carry out fair investigations.
The firm also failed to finalise complaints within a reasonable time and did not provide complainants with updates on the progress of their case, as well as failing to co-operate with the Financial Ombudsman Service.
Margaret Cole, director of enforcement at the FSA, comments: “Firms must have in place and operate an effective complaints handling system as a key part of treating customers fairly.
“MAL’s endowment complaints handling failings were systemic, lasting for four years and meant consumers who had been mis-sold endowments were at risk of not receiving compensation at all or only after long delay.”
In addition, director William John Pirie is prohibited from carrying out customer functions in any regulated financial services due to his handling of complaints.
MAL would also have faced a £400,000 fine were it not struggling financially.
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