The complaints, one for Hall and Hanley and another against Help Your Claim, challenged whether the figures stated in both adverts relating to the firms’ average claim could be substantiated.
In response, Hall and Hanley issued a spreadsheet showing that the average amount paid out by banks in June 2014 based on 196 claimants was £2,162, the amount published in their advert. It also provided evidence that the spreadsheet had been sent to the Claims Management Regulation Unit as evidence of their average claim, but told the regulator it was willing to remove the ad from its website.
Help Your Claim did not respond to the ASA’s enquiries about the statement published in its advert, which purported that its average claim amounted to £2,700.
When assessing the complaint, the ASA said lack of specific and prevalent information meant that consumers would interpret Hall and Hanley’s average claim size as being the final amount of compensation, after the deduction of advertiser fees and VAT. It also raised concerns that the average compensation figure had been based on a one-month period, which was also two and a half years before the claim was published.
Help Your Claim came under fire from the advertising watchdog, who criticised the firm for a “lack of substantive response and apparent disregard for the code”. It highlighted a similar issue to Hall and Hanley’s ad, pointing out that it was not clear that the figure published was the amount before taxes and other fees.
The ASA has told both firms that its ad must not appear again in its current form.
Lloyds Banking Group was unavailable for comment at time of writing.