How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask F E Smith Your Own Question

F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 9032
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
18203470
Type Your Law Question Here...
F E Smith is online now

In May 2015 I took out 2 life insurance policies (one for

Resolved Question:

In May 2015 I took out 2 life insurance policies (one for each of my properties) with Aviva via an agent.
I would now like to cancel these policies, which I can.
However, Aviva has paid commission to the agent. In the T&C I signed with the agent it states that I will reimburse him in case of his lost commission in case I stop the insurance. Am I required to reimburse him?
A quick rough answer would be appreciated as its time sensitive.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  F E Smith replied 9 months ago.

Unless the broker advised you in his terms of business, how much his commission was going to be, it is unlikely that he would be able to rely on this term because unless you know the amount of commission that you may be required to pay if you cancel the policy, that you cannot make an informed decision whether to go ahead or not and it’s likely to be treated as an Unfair Term in a Consumer Contract and hence be unenforceable under the Act of the same name.

If he was transparent and told you what the amount of commission was, then it is potentially enforceable.

Can I clarify anything else for you?

Please rate the service positive. It is an important part of the process by which experts get paid. It does not cost you anything but helps us greatly.

Best wishes.

FES

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Many thanks. *****&C did not state the commission. However the Aviva fact sheet (which I received) did spell out the level of commission they would pay him. I then took out the insurance. Guess I am on the hook to pay?
Kind regards,
Danny
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I have added a file, page 2 section 6 (scan 1) mentions the commission and the pages of scan2 show the amount Aviva pays to the broker. I just need to know how certain it is that I need to pay this commission in case I cancel the insurance. Apparently Aviva has already paid the entire commission to the agent who would want a pro-rata back from him in case I cancel the insurance.
Many thanks,
Danny
Expert:  F E Smith replied 9 months ago.

Looking at the level of commission, I can see why you’re concerned. I don’t know how they can justify that amount of commission for arranging a life insurance policy.

The fact sheet, you presumably got after you had entered into the contract, in which case its post-contractual and hence unlikely to be enforceable.

If you got it before, it is still potentially unenforceable because whilst the page detailing what the commission is, is clear enough, (even though that is on page 2 and not in your face as you would expect) there is no mention in that document of any clawback and it’s hidden away at the end of a clause entitled “Your protection” which is misleading.

You could potentially argue that in light of the amount of work involved, it’s an unfair bargain. You hadn’t agreed this price in the event of cancellation and in which case, any price agreed for the service must be reasonable and depending on the work involved that they did in selling you this policy, and advising prior to sale, it may be an unreasonable fee.

I cannot guarantee what is going to happen if the broker decides to chase you and it goes to court because the only person who would know that is the judge on the day. My personal view is that he is unlikely to be able to enforce the whole fee if at all.

If you do go to the Small Claims Court, the worst that can happen is that you have to pay the fee plus a small amount of court costs. It may be worth the argument.

Can I clarify anything else for you?

Please rate the service positive. It is an important part of the process by which experts get paid. It does not cost you anything but helps us greatly.

Best wishes.

FES

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Many thanks for this, very helpful.
Final question, in the T&C's it mentions that any disputes are governed under Scottish law, would this make a difference?
Expert:  F E Smith replied 9 months ago.

No, it just means that it would be litigation in Scotland.

The mechanics of any civil claim are different and the terminology is different but the actual interpretation of the legal system for matters like this is ultimately the same.

F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 9032
Experience: I have been practising for 30 years.
F E Smith and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
< Previous | Next >
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Jo C.

    Jo C.

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    30316
    Over 5 years in practice
< Previous | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/EM/emus/2015-7-7_192327_bigstockportraitofconfidentfemale.64x64.jpg Jo C.'s Avatar

    Jo C.

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    30316
    Over 5 years in practice
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BE/benjones/2015-12-1_0437_ennew.64x64.jpg Ben Jones's Avatar

    Ben Jones

    UK Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    11553
    Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BU/Buachaill/2012-5-25_211156_barrister5.64x64.jpg Buachaill's Avatar

    Buachaill

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    1754
    Barrister 17 years experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JO/jojobi/2013-3-19_0265_maxlowryphoto.64x64.jpg Max Lowry's Avatar

    Max Lowry

    Advocate

    Satisfied Customers:

    894
    LLB, 10 years post qualification experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/UK/UKLawyer/2012-4-12_9849_F2.64x64.jpg UK_Lawyer's Avatar

    UK_Lawyer

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    750
    I am a qualified solicitor and an expert in UK law.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KA/Kasare/kasare.64x64.jpg Kasare's Avatar

    Kasare

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    402
    Solicitor, 10 yrs plus experience in civil litigation, employment and family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/OS/osh/2015-7-7_19268_gettyimagesb.64x64.jpg Joshua's Avatar

    Joshua

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    8199
    LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice