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MP battles for victims of Equitable Life

October 25, 2012 11:38 AM

Milnthorpe summer tour 2011South Lakes MP Tim Farron took part in the Equitable Members' Action Group (EMAG) rally yesterday afternoon, in support of their campaign to get full and proper compensation for all the policy holders affected by the collapse of Equitable Life at the turn of the 21st Century.

While the Coalition Government quickly passed legislation upon coming to power in 2010, to set up a £1.5billion compensation fund to organise the payments to almost one million policy holders who were affected, it ruled out the possibility of providing compensation to the 10,000+ pre-1992 annuitants, i.e. those who had already started withdrawing from their Equitable Life pension before 1st September 1992.

Speaking at the rally, alongside fellow Liberal Democrat MP, Stephen Lloyd, as well as representatives from across the political spectrum, Tim said that while this initial £1.5billion was an important step forward, it absolutely must not be the end of the fight. Tim stated that as the collapse was, in no small part, due to a complete failure in regulation by the Government, they owed the policy holders the full amount lost, which was estimated from the Parliamentary Ombudsman's 2008 report into the crisis at £4.8billion.

Commenting after the rally Tim said: "The people who took out policies with Equitable Life are the victims of a total lack of responsible regulation. They were simply following Government advice to save and plan for the future, yet because of the failures of a few individuals, many of these victims have lost almost everything.

"I supported the Equitable Life (Payments) Act in 2010, because I thought it was a significant step forward and a considerably better proposal than that put forward by the previous Labour Government. However, this absolutely cannot be the end. There are still over 10,000 people who are being totally denied any compensation as well as thousands more who are not receiving anywhere near what they deserve.

"I am determined to keep up the fight and refuse to rest until the Government commits to paying the full £4.8billion these people deserve."