'Misleading' claims ads fall foul of watchdog

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The advertising watchdog has banned two online ads for bank refund claims which made unsubstantiated promises about compensation.

The Advertising Standards Authority today upheld complaints about two separate claims firms following challenges from the Lloyds Banking Group.

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One ruling concerned the website claimback.com, which promoted a PPI service and included a box on its site headed ‘The PPI facts’.

This section stated the firm had ‘already claimed back over £50m for our clients’.

The second ruling applied to Carmarthen-based Thomson Legal Ltd, trading as PBA Refunds, whose Facebook page stated: ‘Our average claim redress is £2,200 per successful agreement’.

In both cases, Lloyds queried whether the claims were misleading and could be substantiated. In both cases the companies in question did not respond to enquiries from the ASA.

In separate but almost identical rulings, the ASA said it was concerned by the firms’ lack of response and ‘apparent disregard’ for the advertising standards code.

The PBA Refunds average redress claim gave consumers the expectation they would receive a similar figure. In the absence of any evidence in support of the claim, the ASA said it had ‘not been substantiated and was misleading’.

The same breaches were found against claimback.com, which was found to have encouraged consumers to pursue a claim using a figure that could not backed up.

Both adverts were banned in their current form and the claims made in each cannot be repeated unless there is evidence to substantiate them.

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