New Legaltech business delivers the missing piece in jigsaw to improve compensation for mis-sold mortgage customers.
- FCA has underestimated the scale of mortgage mis-selling
- Official complaints procedure through FOS is daunting
- CMCs and law firms often produce sub-standard forms
- Technology will shift the balance in favour of mis-sold customers
A Rapidly growing technology business is assisting customers who’ve been mis-sold mortgages via their brand ‘Mortgage.claims,’ to improve their prospects of compensation.
The ME Group is helping customers because the official process, through the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS), is not good enough, and customers are poorly served by claims management companies and law firms, according to ME Group regulatory director Rob Cooper.
In the last few months, 30,000 potential claimants have contacted Cheshire-based ME Group for help, and Rob says that ‘MARS,’ the group’s proprietary software, has identified nearly 5000 claimants with a valid claim, often for six figure sums.
Rob said the Group’s technology “is shifting the equation in favour of customers – often vulnerable – who believe they’ve been mis-sold mortgages and risk losing their homes.”
“Mis-sold mortgages are nothing new, but until now, lack of knowledge, capacity and technology to calculate quantum (the amount of compensation due to a client) has made it difficult to pursue these claims. MARS has arrived to change the market.”
“Our case load has accelerated from a standing start to several hundred enquiries each week, and thanks to our help, law firms now have the right ammunition to help a lot of relieved customers who otherwise risked losing their homes.”
Rob explained that me group’s proprietary technology, ME LegalTech or MARS, produces a comprehensive report for law firms, which includes a settlement figure. “Our algorithms and research capability saves law firms months of work, and because our report ticks all the boxes, the defendant has little if any ‘wriggle room.’”
He believes the scale of mortgage mis-selling is much higher than previously thought. “The FCA’s 2013 investigation of the mortgage market concluded that there was no evidence of mis-selling, but the growing number of people applying for our help suggests otherwise.
He said: “There are 1.9 million borrowers who are just paying off the interest on their mortgage loans, and while mortgage mis-selling is not on the scale of PPI, the individual sums involved are much greater, and we are talking about people’s homes, the biggest financial decision anyone makes in their life.”
The official complaints procedure, through the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) is complex, and the FOS itself has been recently criticised for hard-to-understand decisions and poorly-trained junior employees.
Rob said: “Customers have to fill out an FOS form, which may be discouraging for those not familiar with such matters, and deal with a big official bureaucracy that thanks to PPI has struggled to cope with the volume of complaints during the last few years.”
He added: “The FOS has a tough job because they have to process huge numbers of claims submitted by claims management companies and law firms which can be poorly written, missing essential information and sent through in all sorts of different formats.”
He explained that legal services has been slow to adopt technology, but “ME Group is leading the way in getting a better deal for consumers. PPI was just one scandal that showed that UK financial companies have plenty of form when it comes to mis-selling.”
He said that as well as mortgages, the group are exploring how to apply the same LegalTech proprietary software to help clients get redress from mis-selling car finance packages, SIPPs and Leasehold Properties.
Note for editors
ME Group, headquartered in Alderley Park, Cheshire, applies technology to legal services products on behalf of law firms and their customers.
We provide turnkey solutions for legal firms, encompassing client origination, legal and financial analysis, process outsourcing, case funding, and legal expenses insurance.
The ME LegalTech brand provides expert analysis and reporting services to determine liability and quantum in complex legal matters. This is uniquely ‘Tech’ driven, allowing for complex algorithms to be computed and enabling volume-driven services to be offered.
ME Group uses social media as their key driver for accessing and liaising with clients, and has ambitions to radically reform the system of making claims against mis-selling practices across a wide range of financial services products.
For more information please contact: Ben Welsh, 07568 382040