Wrong or misleading information: case 3

Miss D was sent details of a personal pension which the insurer mistakenly thought belonged to her. She believed that she had an entitlement from employment many years before.

She had a statement from an insurer no longer in business. Thinking this was the same pension, she made a claim on the policy.  She received a lump sum of £700 and a small monthly pension.

The lump sum was used to pay arrears on her mortgage and prevent the repossession of her property.

A few years later the insurer discovered that the real policy holder was another person with the same name.  They attempted to reclaim the lump sum, but not the pension paid to that point.

Miss D was in financial difficulties and was unable to repay the money.

We were puzzled about the whereabouts of the policy for which she had a statement and suggested how she might trace it.

She succeeded in finding the insurer who now held the policy.  It had not yet matured, but when it did it would cover the repayment.

So we said that the insurer should not take steps to recover the money until the policy matured. Both sides were satisfied with that direction.