Mr Rowley and Mr Green, an estate agent and a hotelier, the unsuccessful claimants in the first of the English Interest Rate Swap claims, have instructed the specialist financial services litigation team at Clarke Willmott LLP to appeal.
The appeal is from the judgment from the Manchester Mercantile court rejecting Messrs Rowley and Green’s claim that they were negligently sold an Interest Rate Swap by The Royal Bank of Scotland. In dismissing the claim the judge held that:
1 No advice was given, only information. This is despite the bank’s adviser being introduced as a specialist, a reference in the bank’s file notes to the swap being “suitable” and the adviser later conceding that the claimants had not had “good advice“.
2 The statement “Additional costs may be incurred in the event that the customer wishes to come out of this arrangement” was sufficient information and there was no need for the bank to explain the potential risks in any further detail.
The reference to “Additional costs” means little without an explanation of breakage costs, in this case running into hundreds of thousands of pounds. The claimants were effectively locked into a costly and disadvantageous contract.
Jon Green of Clarke Willmott LLP, Senior Associate and lead solicitor on the case said of the appeal “This appears to be a clear case of mis-selling, these were complex financial derivative products. Banks are required by the FSA to be clear and fair in their discussions with clients and to ensure that their clients understand the nature of the risks inherent in these products. It is clear to me that RBS failed to do that.”
“In the Rubenstein case, we led the way to the Court of Appeal decision in favour of the wronged party and we are confident of putting another wrong decision right. This decision affects not just Messrs Rowley and Green but many Interest Rate Swap victims. If allowed to stand, the judgment will allow the whole Interest Rate Swap mis-selling episode to go uncorrected and countless businesses will be made insolvent and their owners will be bankrupted.”
Clarke Willmott LLP is acting for numerous clients who have alleged that they were mis-sold Interest Rate Swaps.