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'Worthless' warranties

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X-Ray production team X-Ray production team | 17:33 UK time, Monday, 13 February 2012

Motorcare Warranties

Motorcare Elite Waranties


Former customers of a collapsed south Wales car warranty company could be in line for compensation, X-Ray has learned.

The programme has revealed how customers were left out of pocket when Llantwit Major based Motorcare Elite (2008) Ltd collapsed last year.

The firm was run by former prison officer Harby Panesar who flaunted his wealth on TV in 2009  when he spent a reported £20,000 on his daughter’s birthday party

Two victims of the collapse of the company were Adrian and Beverley Reynolds from Cwmcarn – who bought a £700 life-of-ownership policy when they bought a Nissan pick-up at auction.
But when Adrian tried to claim for repairs costing more than £1,200 he found insurance underwriters, Alpha Insurance had no record of the policy he had paid for. They said they had never underwritten life-of-ownership policies.

His wife Beverley said, “We are furious thinking that we have not got something that we have paid for and worked hard for.”

Another customer, Andrew Rafferty from Hirwaun, said he faced long delays when he claimed on his warranty in January 2011. When the company collapsed in March he was told that Motorcare records showed his claim had already been paid.

Mr Rafferty told X-Ray, “It makes me very angry to think there are people like him out there taking money from working class people who have worked for this money.”

Mr Rafferty’s case was not an isolated one. Alpha insurance said they had evidence that: “Motorcare administered claims which, whilst marked as paid in their recovered records, are stated to be outstanding by claimants.”

The Financial Services Authority are investigating the company. In a statement the FSA said, “If you were a customer of motor breakdown insurance firm, Motorcare Elite, there is the possibility you were sold a policy which has now turned out to be worthless.

“Information we have seen suggests that when Motorcare sold some policies to customers, it may have failed to properly register their details and premiums.”

But the hope of compensation comes from Financial Services Compensation Scheme. The FSCS is the UK's compensation fund for customers of authorised financial services firms - like Motorcare Elite - and they may pay out compensation if a firm is unable to pay claims against it. The FCCS is currently investigating Morotcare to see if customers will qualify for compensation.

Once you’ve contacted them they will look into your claim and decide if you’re eligible for compensation. Once you have contacted them it will take a maximum of six months to decide your claim.

You don't need to claim through a solicitor or accountant and bringing a claim direct to the Scheme will not cost you anything.

If you'd like more information about how to make a claim your can contact them by telephone 0800 678 1100 or 0207 741 4100 or by visiting their website www.fscs.org.uk or you can write to them at the following address: Financial Services Compensation Scheme, 7th floor, Lloyds Chambers, Portsoken Street, London, E1 8BN

The FSA have also urged Motorcare customers with invalid policies to contact them and the Financial Ombusdman Service.

You can call the FSA Consumer Helpline Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm by calling 0845 606 1234. You can also email them consumer.queries@fsa.gov.uk

You can get in touch with the Financial Ombudsman Service either by phone  0800 023 4567 (free for people phoning from a "fixed line") or 0300 123 9 123 (free for mobile-phone users who pay a monthly charge for calls to numbers starting 01 or 02). You can also use email: complaint.info@financial-ombudsman.org.uk or you can write to them at the following address: The Financial Ombudsman Service, South Quay Plaza, 183 Marsh Wall, London, E14 9SR.

When confronted by the programme, Mr Panesar said now was "not the right time" to explain the issues raised by the programme, although he did say policies were properly underwritten.

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