Two directors of mortgage firm are fined £60,000

A review of self certified mortgages sold between June 2006 and June 2007 found that both directors had fallen short of the standards expected by the FSA.

William John Evans and Gary Howes failed to check whether their customers had provided them with accurate information. They also neglected to check the affordability and suitability of recommended mortgage contracts, exposing their customers to the risk of receiving unsuitable advice.

The failings were so severe that the FSA has publicly censured the firm. The FSA would have fined the firm £50,000 but Abbey Mortgages Limited could not afford a financial penalty. The firm has however agreed to undertake a past business review and to stop advising on, or arranging, any future self certified business mortgage contracts.

Georgina Philippou, FSA Head of Retail Enforcement said:"Obtaining and clearly recording the right information from customers is not just about process but is an important step in preventing financial crime and giving customers the right advice and treating them fairly. This is always important but is especially important in difficult economic times."

Mr Evans and Mr Howes agreed to settle at an early stage of the investigation, and qualified for a discounted fine. Were it not for this, the financial penalty would have been £42,800 for each director.