Silverpoint Compensation Claims
For several years this firm has represented clients seeking to terminate timeshares sold to them by the prolific timeshare developer, Silverpoint.
In December 2019 Silverpoint went into liquidation as a result of having to face a significant amount of complaints and claims by unhappy consumers.
For a number of years Silverpoint promoted itself as a seller of exclusive holiday investments and promoted the sale of properties, mainly in Spain and Tenerife.
Silverpoint were responsible for promoting and selling memberships in the following timeshare clubs:
- Hollywood Mirage
- Beverley Hills Club
- Beverley Hills Heights
- Palm Beach Club
- The Paramount
Typically, consumers were approached to attend meetings which in many cases resulted in them purchasing timeshare at the above resorts as an investment. The sales meetings were lengthy and high pressure and a typical complaint was that representations were made that purchasing a timeshare through Silverpoint would not only facilitate luxurious holidays, but would enable the average consumer to acquire an interest in underlying properties which, in due course, would see an investment return. In many cases, these products were financed by a UK bank, Clydesdale Financial Services Limited trading as Barclays Partner Finance.
Many of the Silverpoint victims were elderly and could ill afford to lose money in what subsequently transpired to be high-risk investments.
Throughout the Silverpoint sales process, promises were made that the timeshares purchased would be sold in the future for a profit. Cashback incentives were offered to offset maintenance fees and loan interest repayments. Unfortunately, the timeshares sold by Silverpoint were not capable of being re-sold. Indeed, the writer in over a decade of assisting clients in respect of these products, has yet to come across any Silverpoint owner who was able to sell their timeshare on the open market. The result was that clients were left having to pay maintenance fees for a timeshare in perpetuity whilst being left to repay the bank loan or loans.
In 2015 the Spanish Supreme Court held that certain timeshare contracts were null and void, if they involve the sale of what is known as “floating timeshares” or where the term of the contract was for a period in excess of 50 years,
There were a significant number of claims presented following the ruling of the Spanish Supreme Court and in December 2019 Silverpoint entered liquidation with the result that it is unlikely that consumers will be compensated unless the Court-appointed Liquidator can locate assets for distribution amongst secured creditors.
Spanish lawyers have advised this firm as follows:
- All claims against Silverpoint in Spain must be filed with the Commercial Court and will be dealt with by the Bankruptcy Administrator.
- More than 400 cases have been opened in the Courts.
- The situation with the Courts in Spain is chaotic given the sheer number of cases and there has been a delay in preparing a bankruptcy proposal.
- It is increasingly evident that clients are unlikely to recover the money invested as Silverpoint has little or sufficient assets to satisfy claims by unsecured creditors.
We are aware that a number of unregulated cold calling companies are still attempting to promote claims in Spain against Silverpoint. Our view is that these companies are merely charging clients for them to be added as an unsecured creditor in the Silverpoint liquidation and it may be the case that these clients are throwing good money after bad.
As UK solicitors this firm has been focused and pursuing claims against UK banks that financed claims in respect of Silverpoint timeshare investments and having undertaken a significant amount of work preparing similar fact evidence and legal submissions we are pleased to say that a number of our clients have now been compensated in full by the banks involved, with compensation including:
- Write off of loans.
- Full refund of all money paid in respect of loans.
- Interest at 8% per annum.
- Banks to assume liability for the timeshares.
In respect of the claims, they have been based on allegations of misrepresentation and unfair relationship pursuant to Section 75 and 140A of the Consumer Credit Act 1974. If a claim is made out the UK banks are jointly and severally liable. With respect to the Silverpoint bank claims we are pleased to say we are undertaking such claims on a no win – no fee basis, subject to qualifying criteria.
We have learnt some important lessons from pursuing these claims:
- Banks will either ignore complaints or deny liability as a matter of course.
- To succeed claims need to be supported by detailed witness evidence and appropriate legal submissions. In cases of misrepresentation, a complainant has to identify the representations and why they were false. In cases of unfair relationship, it is necessary to identify why the relationship is unfair – this involves a careful analysis of how the timeshares were sold and the unfairness of key contractual terms contained within purchase contract’s “small print”.
- It is important that any clients with a UK loan taken to purchase a Silverpoint timeshare act as soon as possible to protect their position. There are strict time limits. In order to pursue a claim based upon misrepresentation Claimants will generally have 6 years from the date of the contract to present a claim to the lending bank or, in the case of claims based on an unfair relationship, 6 years from the date of the end of the relationship with the relevant bank (i.e. repayment of the loan).
Unfortunately, we have seen cases where clients have been “parked” by unregulated claims companies who have done nothing, with the result that clients’ claims have been prejudiced.
If a claim qualifies then in our view it has very good prospects of success.
Why use a Timeshare Solicitor?
Athena Law is a full-service legal firm with a long-established timeshare dispute resolution department, headed by one of the founding partners of the firm, Mr Stephen Boyd. Mr Boyd has been a solicitor for over 20 years and over the last decade has cemented his reputation as one of the leading solicitors in this field, ably supported by his team.
As part of our service, we will undertake an initial review of your documents and claim at no cost. We will only take on a claim if we believe if has good prospects of success, unlike unregulated timeshare paralegal companies. It is important, to be honest with clients. Clients are engaging solicitors not only to pursue claims but to give them independent advice. If a claim has no prospects clients should be told. If claims do have prospects, then clients should expect the same to be pursued and appropriate legal submission to be made on their behalf.
Due to the complexities of these cases, we can give no guarantees. All we guarantee is that we will use our expertise to give our clients the best prospect of success and we will pursue their claims vigorously.
If you have had the misfortune to entrust your claim with an unregulated “timeshare professional” then please contact us. At the very least we can provide you with an independent review and pursue any viable claim properly. In addition, you may have a claim against unregulated/unqualified legal representatives.
Article originally posted on Athena Law – Silverpoint Timeshare Compensation Claims by Stephen Boyd.