HBOS Reading: Independent Review

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 4:30 pm on 18th December 2018.

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Photo of Kevin Hollinrake Kevin Hollinrake Conservative, Thirsk and Malton 4:30 pm, 18th December 2018

My hon. Friend is absolutely right. It is completely one-sided. It means there is a complete imbalance of power in what is supposed to be an independent review, because the bank itself has phalanxes of advisers, whereas the victims clearly cannot afford to provide for the same number or calibre of advisers.

Offers are not made on an open basis; it is a take-it-or-leave-it offer. Imagine, Sir Christopher, that you have been stripped of all your assets over a period of 10 years. You are desperately trying to seek justice, and finally somebody offers you a cheque. Your only other option is to go to the court. What do you do? It is a take-it-or-leave-it offer. If you say, “Actually, I don’t think that is enough,” you get a secondary meeting, but there is no interrogation of the facts; it is simply take it or leave it. That is the nature of the review.