UP to 200,000 British investors may be able to claim thousands of pounds back after Swiss banks wrongfully claimed commission fees.
But the clock is ticking for those affected to claw back their money, as the right to claim a fee charged to clients in 2009 will expire at the end of 2019.
Banks based in Switzerland may owe thousands in compensation Credit: Getty - Contributor
The commission fees — or "retrocessions" — were a lucrative component of Swiss investment practice for many years.
But they were usually added without clients' informed consent by banks including Credit Suisse and UBS.
A 2012 ruling changed that.
Swiss courts ruled that unless fees were charged to clients with explicit authorisation, banks and asset managers are prohibited from retaining them. They must hand the commissions back to investors who request them, plus a 5 per cent interest rate for late payment.
Litigation funding firm Liti-Link says someone who invested assets of £500,000 in the years up to 2009 could be owed approximately £5,000 in retrocessions.
Its CEO Hubert Schwaerzler said: "Just like the PPI scandal, many investors have no idea they were fleeced by the people they trusted with their money. Now it's time to claw back the thousands of pounds they took.
"We urge anyone who has invested in Swiss banks over the last decade to contact Liti-Link as soon as possible."
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While Liti-Link has been “inundated” with claims by foreign investors from Italy, Germany and beyond, British investors have been slow to act.
It is offering to pursue claims for UK savers, in return for a 40 per cent cut of any winnings.
Over 90 per cent of Liti-Link’s clients have received a payout so far, the firm claims.