The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is an independent body that regulates the financial services industry in the UK.
It was given a wide range of rule-making, investigatory and enforcement powers by the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 and although set up by government and accountable to Parliament, the FCA operates independently and is funded by the firms they regulate.
The FCA has four statutory objectives, which are:
- maintaining confidence in the UK financial system;
- contributing to the protection and stability of the UK financial system
- securing a degree of protection for consumers; and
- the reduction of financial crime.
In recent years, the government has increased the scope of the FCA’s work. The Retail Distribution Review (RDR) is one of the prime responsibilities of the FCA to protect consumers. Yet the FCA has been active in trying to ensure companies' anonymity when they have been involved in mis-selling activity. This is seen in the case known as the LAUTRO 19 and recently, the Treasury Select Committee criticised the FCA for its poor enforcement of the LIBOR rate setting rules. Simply put a consumer should have confidence and trust in the FSA to act impartially if they feel they have been mistreated by a financial company.
The procedure is that anyone can approach the FCA direct to claim compensation; however, this is both time consuming and complicated which is not what consumers want at a time when they need help and advice with their investment planning.
You might feel competent to deal with simple money matters on your own but some aspects of finance can be hard to understand especially if you feel you have been mis-sold and ill informed.
On 19th December 2012, the Financial Services Act 2012 received royal assent and will come into force on 1st April 2013. The act creates a new regulatory framework for financial services and abolishes the FCA. Whether or not this will mean changes to the current compensation claim procedure remains to be seen, however it is better to be aware that changes are afoot.
Although currently assistance from the FCA is free, good financial advice has never been free. Any quality financial adviser will clearly explain how much advice will cost.
In the case of Mis-Sold Shares handling your claim, we will take you through the minefield of paperwork and deal with all the relevant bodies to finalise your claim. For a set fee paid up front, we will manage the whole process, the balance only payable should your claim be successful and would be taken from your compensated sum. This way you know exactly what you are paying, Mis-Sold Shares are working only for YOU and the advice you receive is not influenced by how much your adviser could earn from other sources, Mis-Sold Shares have only one objective to claim back your losses on your money invested.