Over 250 small business men and women converged on Westminster as part of the latest Bully Banks “Brolly Day” Assembly outside the House of Commons yesterday.
While Prime Ministers Question Time was held inside the chamber, Bully Banks members highlighted their cause in Westminster Hall where constituency MPs were urged to pledge their support to small businesses damaged by bank misconduct.
I was delighted to meet many of these business men and women at a Bully Banks conference that took place later in Westminster, and to be able to answer questions about the legal action members could take to seek redress from the banks.
I was happy to tell them about some of our successes so far. As a firm, we have already recovered millions of pounds for our clients who have been mis-sold interest rate hedging products. These products placed a terrible strain on clients’ businesses and included massive costs to exit the agreements, which were not disclosed to clients at the time of sale.
It's estimated that more than 40,000 interest rate hedging products were sold to small and medium sized businesses and the Financial Conduct Authority has claimed that more than 90% of these sales did not comply with regulatory requirements.
Small businesses have seen the value of the products fall and are now in the position of owing banks huge sums of money in interest payments.
As a law firm, we feel honoured to be able to help these clients secure redress through the FCA scheme. At the moment, more than 50 of our clients have been offered damages and in most cases a tear up of the swap that has been issued to them.
But in many cases, this result has come at a great cost to the client. Some businesses have been fighting for years to have their voices heard at great personal cost. I have heard heart-breaking stories about business owners whose health and relationships have suffered as a result of being sold this product.
We have been, and continue to be, honoured to help our clients negotiate the complex legal hurdles of gaining justice from the banks when it comes to swaps, especially as some of them now take their offers forward to pursue the next stage of the process – consequential loss.