The Financial Conduct Authority have written to the Home Secretary, Theresa May MP confirming that Lloyds Bank are being investigated by the regulator on whistle blowing allegations of a new widespread mis-selling to LTSB customers.
On April 30 2013, the Home Secretary, received a letter from the FCA Director of Supervision, Clive Adamson, whom confirmed that Lloyds were subject to FCA probes into LTSB mis-selling to poorer UK customers ;and were focusing on investigating Lloyds selling practices .Clive Adamson confirms Lloyds were being scrutinised on whistle blowing claims for ”mis-sold products to customers based upon wealth and income”
On June 14, 2013, the FCA Company Secretary , Simon Pearce, wrote directly to Ian Taplin confirming Lloyds Bank were subject to “enquiries ” concerning his whistle blowing allegations of a new widespread mis-selling .
Ian Taplin is an active Lloyds Bank Whistle Blower and alleges up to 1 million UK citizens were mis-sold life insurance products.
One of his main concerns relate to the way poorer and more vulnerable LTSB customers were treated when compared with the Bank’s more wealthy customers ;and, for example, were seemingly being denied the same access to cheaper life insurance products -which were being offered to the richer clients.
“Essentially I took issue with LTSB, as to why poorer customers were being sold life insurance products, which could be up to 40% more expensive than the same products being offered the richer customers”
“LTSB were seemingly penalising their customers for being poorer.
“Life insurance costs and premiums are set by health age and gender criteria and not on the fact you are poorer or richer.
“In some cases the poorer LTSB customers were apparently paying over £10,000 more than richer customers for asking for the exact same advice within the same regulated bank”
“Many of these life insurance products were sold with LTSB mortgages and were underwritten for up to 25 years.
“So we are talking about substantial financial commitments being made by LTSB poorer customers for a lengthy time period.
“I have shared evidence with the FCA that Lloyds seemingly breached UK regulatory law which is based upon the Principles of treating customers fairly, in a transparent manner,and in the customers’ best interest.
“Also it seems that Lloyds were discriminating against their customers for their lack of wealth which contravenes Article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights” which enables British citizens the right to have a private and family life, free from any discrimnation”
“There are several other related complaints to my whistle blowing actions which are concerned with apparent alarming distortions in the way LTSB seemingly treated poorer customers when compared with their more wealthy customers.
“The Life insurance LTSB mis-selling claim is just one example of many such apparent distortions.”
Ian Taplin,a former Army officer ,worked at Lloyds Private Bank and Wealth Division from 2005 to 2010 and was fired for insisting his whistle blowing concerns were dealt with.
He claims he has refused 3 offers of a financial settlement which invariably contain gagging clauses.
A Lloyds Senior Director wrote to Ian Taplin in November 2010 confirming that such offers were made for “commercial” considerations.
He estimates that Lloyds may be facing a new liability of up to £5bn.
He claims that Lloyds may have to face mis-selling claims which could result in an average pay out of £5,000 – to as many as 1 million LTSB customers.
“We have shared evidence with the FCA that LTSB seemingly abused the trust of it’s poorer and more vulnerable customers on a massive and nationwide scale for years – possibly for as long as 10 years.-from 2000-2010 and maybe longer.
“The present and former Lloyds Senior Leaderships were made aware -formally and in writing – of my whistle blowing claims ,but have refused to act.”
Ian Taplin is also a Founding Member of Whistle Blowers UK -whistleblowersuk.org -the influential network which offers mutual support for whistle blowers.
Written as honest comment.