Equitable Life: a decade of regulatory failure


When I went to the Kings Cross access meeting last week, one notable absentee was Camden Lib Dem Cllr Paul Braithwaite. Paul is Camden’s cycling champion (in the sense of advocate – though for all I know he may have the odd medal too) and as such is fully behind the campaign to have a truly accessible bridge across the new Kings Cross station, that will work for cyclists as well as pedestrians.

However, he had the best of excuses for missing the Kings Cross meeting. July 16th was also the day for the publication of the Parliamentary Ombudsman’s report into the Equitable Life scandal; and Paul is General Secretary of EMAG, the Equitable Members Action Group. Equitable Life policy holders prudently invested in savings plans to fund annuities and pensions, only to find that the company was refusing to pay the promised amounts – and the Government failed to do anything to help.

This isn’t the first report into Equitable Life; but the Government has ignored previous ones, despite repeated verdicts that the regulators had failed to protect policy holders. Lib Dem MEP Diana Wallis worked on a highly critical EU report into the scandal which demanded compensation for Equitable Life policy holders, and described the government’s failure to respond as “immoral and illegal.”

Up to a million policy holders have been affected, and tragically thousands have died before any compensation was in prospect. But now it looks as if Gordon Brown might finally be shamed into announcing some compensation for Equitable Life victims.

Liberal Democrat campaigners getting justice for people after a decade of Labour failure: sounds good to me….

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1 Comment »

  1. […] Consumer ·Tagged Emily Thornberry, Equitable Life, Jo Swinson, Vince Cable I’ve blogged before about the Equitable Life […]

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