AMI: Court support on interest-only welcomed

Robert Sinclair AMI

With the mortgage advice sector continuing to be attacked by a series of legal claims related to interest-only mortgages sold between 2004 and 2007 the Association of Mortgage Intermediaries (AMI) has welcomed moves by many courts to terminate a number of cases before commencement.

Whilst a small number of these have gone to FOS the majority currently look as though the firms face court claims and action. This is a very expensive to defend. In addition, it has been a factor in escalating PII excesses and premiums.

AMI continues to work with its members to provide information and support to ensure that these are defended, where appropriate, in a fair but robust manner.

It said the past few months had been encouraging in that a number of cases have terminated in the final weeks before commencement of court hearings. In addition, there have been three cases that provide evidence that they are correct to defend these claims.

The results in Ross and Ross versus Attanta Limited; Collett and Collett versus APF Private Clients Limited; and Colborn and Colborn versus Albany Park Limited all provide support to the broker position.

Robert Sinclair (pictured), chief executive of AMI, said: “These decisions strike out the cases as being time-barred. In addition, the courts in delivering their judgments have also considered many of the substantive issues under review.

“These broadly have reduced the amounts of claim substantially, established that they have limited or no merit, set out that the costs of court time outweigh potential benefit and challenge the quality of both the claimant evidence and expert witness work.

“AMI continues to work to inform FCA, FOS and the SRA on these results. We are encouraged that firms might be able to recover their costs from the claimants as they mostly are insured.”

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