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Junior ISA - trapped - product doesn't work and can't withdraw money

I did a lot of research before opening a Junior ISA for my son as his godfather had decided to invest in some specific company shares for him (rather than buying funds) and I decided that Best Invest would be ideal as you can self select investments.

I opened the account with a small cash deposit and was surprised to find that the shares - whilst traded on LSE - aren't able to be bought using the BestInvest platform. Customer service confirmed this and so I asked that they respect the cooling off period and close my account and refund the investment. They agreed, promised that no fees would be charged.

Then the nightmare started. I was told several days later that I couldn't close a Junior ISA, and they claimed that the Financial Services Regulations didn't apply to them so the contract couldn't be cancelled. I raised a formal complaint with them, according to their internal processes and have now patiently waited the 28 days they request for a response. They haven't provided a final written response, nor have they closed my account, nor have they refunded my son's money, but they have made it so that I can't access the account online.

This is a business which doesn't honour its obligations under the Financial Services Regulations and which doesn't respond to customer complaints. Furthermore it offers a product which isn't fit for purpose which will then leaves the customer looking for a way out.

Financial Services is an industry based on trust. This company has lost mine.


Since writing the review above, I have now received an offer of a refund from the company, although they are at pains to point out that this is an exception.

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David Brackin
United Kingdom