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It’s that time of the year when accountants are reviewing, or have just finished reviewing, their clients’ finances and occasionally discover bombshells like major investment losses.
It’s that time of year when Slater and Gordon sees a peak in client referrals from accountants who suspect their client has been a victim of negligent financial advice.
Often it is the accountant who can better appreciate the problem, and possible solutions, while the client is unaware that they are the victim of bad financial advice, and have options for recovery.
Apart from their financial knowledge, accountants are in a unique position of trust. Clients bare their financial soul to their accountants, and place great trust in their advice.
Accountants may discover losses that shouldn’t have happened. Apart from the market performance of recent years, losses may be due to poor financial advice.
Accountants who discover such a situation often recommend that their clients seek legal advice on possible recovery. Such action may be needed urgently as time may be running out for claims arising from the 2005-2006 financial year.
Slater and Gordon regularly acts for investors who have suffered financial loss as a result of inappropriate advice, such as being placed in an investment product unsuited to their risk profile, or being encouraged to take out an investment loan that they cannot afford to service.
Slater and Gordon lawyers can also speak with business groups on how to avoid this type of claim. Or, for a planner who recommends a client seek recovery, the firm can explain recovery options including the firm’s innovative RecoverTM product.
RecoverTM offers distressed investors a fixed price assessment of the merits of their case before legal action is begun. A No Win No FeeTM arrangement is available to eligible clients to cover Slater and Gordon’s legal costs. Eligible clients can also access insurance to cover the defendant's legal costs and their own disbursements in the event their case is unsuccessful.
Slater and Gordon’s Odette McDonald says RecoverTM offers a lower-risk option for those whose claim exceeds the $150,000 limit of the Financial Ombudsman Service and wish to pursue valid claims against negligent advisors.
“RecoverTM gives people the option of pursuing justice while reducing their worry about throwing good money after a bad investment,” Ms McDonald said. "Litigation always has a degree of uncertainty – RecoverTM will minimise that uncertainty.
“Investors can thus start their claim knowing that their costs, and, if necessary, those of their opponent, are covered.”