We are proud to announce that, in February 2020, both Praetorian Legal and Mercantile Claims have been granted ‘full authorisation’ under the Financial Conduct Authority’s (“FCA”) new role as the UK’s Claims Management Regulator.
Since 31 March 2019, when the FCA took over the task of regulating Claims Management companies from the Ministry of Justice, anyone applying for FCA authorisation was granted ‘temporary permission’ to undertake Claims Management work, pending full authorisation. Any company failing to fulfil the FCA’s robust vetting and checking process will not be fully authorised and will lose their temporary permission status, preventing them from undertaking regulated work.
Only those business operated by directors who are considered to be ‘fit and proper’ will be granted ‘full authorisation’ by the UK’s largest and toughest financial and insurance sector regulator. Fully authorised businesses must demonstrate their ability to deliver and maintain very high standards of customer service, fairness, operating systems, procedures and, integrity. Senior managers are appointed upon full authorisation and are held personally culpable for any failings of the business and its staff.
As a market leader in claims management and timeshare services, we embrace the much-needed regulation of an industry littered with unethical, unregulated companies and, rogue traders. The eleven-month application process has been robust, but this is to be expected in order to raise standards. Only those who are suitable and competent can now operate within a professional and regulated industry, whilst the unscrupulous operators who are unwilling, or unable, to operate compliantly cannot.
What does this mean to our clients moving forward?
Mercantile Claims and Praetorian Legal enjoy a 5* rating from our customers and our full authorisation serves to further promote confidence and trust in our brands. Our FCA authorisation demonstrates our integrity, our trustworthiness, our fairness and, our professionalism.
What this means is that we are accountable to the UK’s largest regulator, who watches over us, to ensure the customer journey is consistent, fair and, compliant, with the tried and trusted principles put in place by the FCA to protect you the consumer against unethical and unscrupulous trading practices.
Our position as a market leader in an unregulated industry has now been recognised, and our FCA authorisation is testament to our commitment to our clients. Whilst timeshare is unregulated, what has changed is that timeshare consumers no longer have to question the reason why they should or shouldn’t use the services of Praetorian Legal and Mercantile Claims.
Unlike many other businesses within the timeshare industry, whose staff and management consist of ex-timeshare salespeople, Mercantile Claims and Praetorian Legal are legal professionals who are legally qualified and trained in the specialised work we undertake.
Under our authorisation, we have to commit to treating our clients with fairness, which also prevents us from taking any money upfront guaranteed.
We are proud to announce that our persistence in pursuing your consumer rights have now been recognised. We have recently received legal determinations on fractional timeshare products and some financed traditional timeshares. Accordingly, we can now offer timeshare owners, who purchased fractional and timeshare products with a linked finance agreement with any of the following:
- Barclays Partner Finance;
- Hitachi Finance;
- Shawbrook Bank;
- Clydesdale Bank; or;
- any other directly financed timeshare;
at no cost to you, our timeshare services. We will pursue a financial recovery under your credit agreement which, in most cases, will lead to a termination of your timeshare, and this will be carried out on a NO WIN NO FEE agreement.
Typically a positive determination may include any, or all, of the following:
- Repayment of the loan(s) amount(s) (this will apply to however many linked loans you have taken out to fund timeshare purchases)
- Any upselling of another timeshare product, i.e. trade-in values (this may be subject to past usage and cannot be guaranteed)
- Refund of maintenance fees (this again may be subject to past usage.)
- Statutory interest at 8% per annum calculated from commencement of loan(s)
A positive determination is usually where a timeshare owner is ‘put back into the position they would have been in had they have not purchased the timeshare’, less any benefit they have received throughout the contractual term.
All of our determinations to date have led to our clients receiving a significant amount of money returned to them; money they thought they would never see again.
The process and arguments we have developed have been very successful, and you should not entrust this important task to just anyone. You only have one opportunity of getting this right, and it is vitally important that you choose the right representation. We now have a proven track record in bringing your claim to a successful conclusion.
If your claim is turned down because it hasn’t been correctly presented, you will have lost the opportunity to get your money back forever