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FCA Warns Dolphin Trust Investments

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Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) Warns Dolphin Trust/German Property Group Investments "at-risk" & "to take action now"

In its latest update on Dolphin Trust GmbH, now known as German Property Group (GPG), City watchdog the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has confirmed that several of the overseas investment scheme’s companies have entered preliminary bankruptcy proceedings in Germany. This is a concerning development for anyone who has invested in the scheme, either directly or through a self-invested personal pension (SIPP).

The FCA’s website advises investors:

“This means that any money you might have invested in this scheme is at risk and you need to take action now to help recover this…We are working with those financial advisers we have identified as advising UK customers to invest in GPG, as well as the SIPP operators we have identified that are holding people’s investments. However, there are actions you can take now.”

Dolphin Trust/GPG is an investment scheme specialising in the development of German listed buildings into luxury accommodation promising double-digit returns. Often following recommendations made by an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA), the scheme was commonly available to investors via a SIPP. The bonds under the scheme are only payable on maturity after either two or five years. Before the mention of bankruptcy, warning signs of problems with the investments have included maturity payment delays, interest payment issues and the possible sale of properties yet to be developed.

The financial mis-selling team at TLW Solicitors recently recovered a substantial compensation payment for a client who was advised to invest in Dolphin Trust /GPG. Although Dolphin Trust/GPG is not regulated by the FCA, the advice our client received from a regulated financial adviser to invest in the scheme was.

As such, the Government-backed Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), set up to help victims of failed financial firms, covered the client’s losses for receiving unsuitable investment advice.

As we are currently helping many Dolphin Trust/GPG investors try to recover compensation for their losses, TLW Solicitors’ financial mis-selling team is familiar with the troubled investment company’s unfolding issues.

In 2019 Dolphin Trust was the subject of a BBC Radio 4’s “You and Yours” investigation, highlighting that properties were often unsuitable for renovation and needed far more investment than projected. Given his financial mis-selling experience, TLW partner Peter McKenna was interviewed on the BBC programme.

Commenting on the FCA’s stark warning to investors, Peter McKenna said:

”Unfortunately we have been expecting this news for some time. In the last 2 years there have been a number of issues with Dolphin/GPG which suggested there were real problems and investors were at risk of losing out. For those who have taken no action until now, they really need to seek advice on what their options are. However, I would recommend those people take fresh independent advice as opposed to speaking to the those who recommended they invest in Dolphin in the first place.”

Working on a ‘no win – no fee’ basis, TLW’s experienced team can help you through the FSCS compensation process. Our clients are reassured by our knowledge and experience of FSCS procedures and, indeed, we have had FSCS claims successfully upheld for clients whose claims had previously been refused on purely technical grounds.

If you or a loved one have invested your pension, or part of it, with Dolphin Trust GmbH/German Property Group, and are worried about your investment and the financial advice that you received, please get in touch with TLW Solicitors for a no-obligation discussion.

To get in touch with one of the specialist financial mis-selling lawyers here at TLW Solicitors, call us on 0800 169 5925, email or complete the call back form.

Time limits can apply, so anyone wishing to claim should do so without delay.

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“Unfortunately we have been expecting this news for some time. In the last 2 years there have been a number of issues with Dolphin/GPG which suggested there were real problems and investors were at risk of losing out.”

Peter McKenna