A number of years ago I took out a life insurance policy with a well-known life insurance company. I did this to support the financial future of my family - after all, the policy was guaranteed to pay out on my death as long as I maintained my monthly payments.
Having gone through the documents, I signed up with the understanding that my monthly payments would remain consistent during my lifetime and that my family would be paid when I died.
Sadly, I was mistaken.
After ten years of paying for the policy, I noticed that the monthly payments started to increase. Little by little initially, so I didn't really pay any attention until I eventually noticed that they had significantly increased from the original figure quoted.
Despite being a retired solicitor and reading the documentation carefully, I had not noticed anything in the sales material to suggest that after a number of years my monthly premium payments would go up every year as I got older.
When I queried this, I was informed that if I decided to cancel my policy, I would lose virtually all the money I had paid to date. And furthermore, if I wanted to maintain the monthly premium at the previous rate, the guaranteed pay out on my death would be adjusted and it would be just a fraction of the amount I had agreed.
In short, unless I continued to pay ever-increasing monthly premiums, I would lose virtually everything that I had paid the insurance company and my family would lose the financial security I intended the policy to provide.
I felt trapped and let down.
After some serious thought, I decided to cancel the policy because I realised that the premiums were becoming unaffordable.
After I cancelled my policy, I could not shake the feeling I had been wronged and was the victim of an injustice. My wife encouraged me not to take this lying down and I started legal action.
The legal proceedings were long and drawn out. It was also expensive and stressful to take on a multi-billion pound insurance company.
However, I worked with a very talented and driven team and, after three long years and just weeks short of going to court, the insurance company agreed to settle out of court.
Through this settlement, I received compensation from the insurance company to the tune of several hundreds of thousands of pounds.
Although I felt vindicated, our research showed that there are possibly hundreds of thousands of other innocent policy holders who have found themselves in a similar position over the previous 30 or 40 years.
Many of these people cancelled their policies as the premiums became unaffordable and, in doing so, lost almost everything they had paid towards their life insurance product.
The more I looked into this, the more troubled I became by the behaviour of some of the UK’s most trusted insurance brands.
What soon became apparent was that industry-wide, insurance companies were taking advantage of their customers who, individually, did not have the ability to fight back.
This had to change.
I spoke to the team who I worked with on my case and asked if something could be done about this wrongdoing.
And thus, WLI Claims came into being. Working on a no-win, no-fee basis, WLI Claims is making it easy, safe and stress-free for those – or the loved ones of those – who have cancelled life insurance policies due to an unexpected rise in premiums to secure the compensation they deserve.