You may have been contacted recently by New South Law, a firm of UK solicitors, either by letter or email in which they state they have been instructed by Sua Casa to update you on the status of your property.

It turns out that Sua Casa is the brand for the team charged with managing communications and support for owners of The Resort Group (TRG) rooms, villas and properties in Cape Verde.

This support is provided online only via a website. There’s lots of helpful information provided because The Resort Group (TRG) are concerned you’ve not been getting information they’ve passed to your pension provider or fractional company, Fractional Property Solutions Limited (FPSL). They even offer “cost effective access to legal advice”.

You’ve probably got a management contract with TRG and another with FPSL who are both asking for money due to impact of the global COVID lockdown and restrictions on international travel. Should you pay out of your own pocket or is it a matter for your pension provider? What happens if you don’t pay? And what about your IFA ongoing advice fees – should you have paid these?

The first matter New South Law raise is that they’d like to know where you want your rental income paid going forward and if you’d like your fractional share to be valued. But first, this law firm would like your details so they can confirm that “the details held on file for owners is accurate”. Seems like a friendly and reasonable approach.

But TRG lawyers have “helped” you in the past when you purchased your property and you’d be right to have concerns about this latest offer. It’s intriguing that the Claims Bureau Group (UK) Limited – a claims management company (CMC) and New South Law share the same address and have 2 directors in common: Michael John Coyne and  Peter Allan O’Donnell. Perhaps the fact that a cap on CMC fees which came into effect this month and does not apply to law firms handling compensation claims has some bearing on this corporate relationship.

If it sounds too good to be true…

  1. Most regulated UK law firms will provide “free initial advice”, typically 30 minutes. How else are they to know if they have the relevant expertise to give you proper legal advice? Apparently TRG have negotiated these preferential terms.
  2. Under General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), your details cannot be passed to third parties without your consent. It begs the question how did either the Claims Bureau or New South Law get your details without your consent? If you give your details to New South Law so they can confirm that “the details held on file for owners is accurate”, you are giving permission for the law firm to contact you further.
  3. If you want to access your ownership documentation, you don’t need to instruct a lawyer. Simply contact your pension or SIPP provider and ask them. They’ll provide details to you free of charge. Alternatively, you can contact the solicitor who you engaged when you purchased your TRG property.
  4. Any rental income should be paid to the owner of the TRG property and its payment would have been established at the beginning together with a schedule of fees. Why should it change now? Are there tax implications of any change in payment instructions?
  5. The website offers simple exit strategies such as removing your ownership from the pension or getting a rapid, conditional sale. Unfortunately, it’s a little more complicated than that: if your property is held in your pension, then the pension trustees are the owners of the property which they hold on your behalf as the beneficiary of the pension. This means the trustees need to agree to the sale. If you have received monies from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, they also need to be notified and agree to any sale.

Get A Free Second Opinion

In April 2021, a SIPP provider named Rowanmoor advised TRG property owners that the “most cost effective and practical way to value your property is to contact a Cape Verde based estate agent with experience of this type of property who can supply a written opinion of the value of the property which we can rely on.”

We know from experience that getting a truly independent valuation of your TRG property is difficult – many firms are sales agents and therefore want to “buy low, sell high”. However, you may not be looking for a valuation or sale. You could have a claim for compensation or simply want to talk to an experienced person who knows this landscape very well and can outline your options.

We Can Help You Claim Compensation

We have helped many investors in overseas property investments such as The Resort Group, Harlequin properties, Dolphin Trust and others. Our team are experienced and knowledgeable in bringing successful compensation claims to both the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) and the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

Recently, we assisted a customer to get FOS compensation for their Cape Verde property where the IFA firm that gave the original advice on the investment. The IFA bought the overseas property and gave cash compensation for the difference between the original purchase price and the sale price. There are other solutions available.

Call Us Now For A No-Obligation Chat

We offer a free assessment of your situation to find out if you may be owed money redress. We will inform you of other options available to you. Don’t delay because there are time limits to claim your compensation. The best time to act is now!

Contact us for an informal discussion to explore your options. You’ll also get a better understanding of how we work before deciding on your best course of action.

Pension Claims Experts

ACL Consultancy Ltd have been in operation as a claims management company (CMC) for 10 years and have offered the lowest flat fee service in the industry since 2017. We welcome the new Financial Conduct Authority regulation to put a cap on CMC fees which came into effect this month.

We are able to work for a reasonable fee because we don’t buy your data from the companies involved in your claim. We pass these cost savings on to you. Our success is your gain.

Our team possess a deep knowledge of pension and investment compensation, including overseas property investment, and welcome your call to find what solutions are available to you. So you’ve nothing to lose and everything to gain by calling us today.