Financial Services Blog
Commentary on the latest in regulation
Credit where credit's due
The controversy surrounding payday loans looks set to continue as the FOS has issued a warning to consumers about payday loan middlemen. As the FCA's massive consumer credit regime takes shape and thousands of newly regulated firms deal with the additional bureaucracy and regulatory burden, FOS has ...
FOS respondents still at risk of further action despite Clark v In Focus ruling
When Lady Justice Arden handed down her judgment in the Court of Appeal case of Clarkv In Focus, she held that a complainant cannot accept an Ombudsman's award at the statutory maximum (currently £150,000) and sue in court for the balance of their redress if it exceeds that limit. We hoped in vain t...
HMRC closing the gap on tax avoidance
Anyone who has invested in, promoted, or advised on any form of tax mitigation scheme may be feeling slightly nervous following the latest announcement from HMRC concerning the on-going saga of tax avoidance. And understandably so.
On 15 July, HMRC published a list of 1,200 investment schemes which...
CoCos go pop!
In the wake of the banking crisis, the Financial Services Act 2012 gave the FCA a range of new and enhanced powers with which to pursue its regulatory objectives. Today, it has used – for the first time – one if its shiny new tools; the FCA has issued a Temporary Product Intervention Rule (TPIR).
Has the FOS decided Lehman's collapse was not foreseeable; or is that too remote a hope?
Nearly six years have elapsed since we first saw the iconic photographs of Lehman Brothers' employees filing out of the former bank's worldwide headquarters, carrying their belongings in cardboard boxes. However, the downfall of Lehman is not yet a distant memory for many financial advisers, as the ...
Enhancing Supervision: How will the FCA's new regulatory model work in the real world?
Readers may recall the FSA's 'close supervision' of firms, which could arise after an ARROW visit if significant failings were identified. The FCA has now re-branded 'close supervision' and, in substance, 'Enhanced Supervision' will mean much the same, albeit couched in the new judgement-based, inte...
Tax 'tsunami': will litigation wave crash over tax advisers and IFAs as Revenue uses new powers?
New powers which will be introduced via the Finance Act 2014 are leading to investors in tax schemes crystallising their tax losses much sooner than anticipated.
Yesterday, news broke that celebrity investors in the £1.2 billion Liberty tax avoidance scheme faced significant losses as HMRC issues a...
Pre-packs – improving a bad reputation?
Pre-packs involve the pre-determined sale of a business before it enters administration, allowing a sale within days of an administrator's appointment. Examples of pre-packs include Dreams, JJB Sports and stockbroker Seymour Pierce. Pre-packs are a useful tool for the insolvency profession allowing ...
FOS in the D&Ock
FOS is back in Court defending its latest jurisdictional land grab. Permission has been granted by the Administrative Court for Judicial Review of FOS' jurisdiction to consider a complaint relating to D&O insurance on the basis a director takes the policy in a personal capacity as a consumer an...
FOS: for free or not for free?
Should consumers pay a fee to bring a complaint to FOS? FOS handled 2.3m initial enquiries and complaints from consumers in 2013/2014. Around one in five of those initial consumer enquiries turned into a formal dispute, so FOS reviewed over half a million new cases last year - a record number. Reduc...
About this blog
Regulation - of the financial services sector in particular - is constantly changing. At RPC, we watch the horizon of the regulated landscape with genuine interest on behalf of clients and others. There are consultants who (at considerable cost) provide more news and content but in this blog we share our thoughts on key developments as they occur and, drawing on our breadth of experience in regulation, we comment on legal and regulatory issues that might not occur to every financial services specialist.