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Home insurance should not be taxed as a luxury

Tony Hazell

Tony Hazell

But poor Lisa seems completely unwanted by most in the industry, partly due to fears of mis-selling claims years down the line.

Lisa will now come with strong risk warnings of the dangers of opting for Lisa over a workplace pension.

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It actually offers some fantastic benefits to youngsters who want to save for a home valued at less than £450,000. The 25 per cent bonus is far more than they could earn in a bank or building society. And the option to take the whole fund tax-free at age 60 beats anything pensions can offer to the self-employed.

Having said that, the penalties for early withdrawals are onerous.

I cannot help feeling the industry’s rejection of Lisa has far more to do with self-interest than consumer protection.

Joint bank account woes

I have for some months been dealing with the case of a woman who opened a joint bank account with her ex-husband in 1999 because he had no banking record. 

She tells me it was used solely for his wages and outgoings.

He left her a couple of years ago, but the bank refuses to remove her from the account.

It has now been frozen, but there is a £4,000 overdraft and various other loans and credit cards in joint names have left her £40,000 in debt.

I have so many similar cases that have led me to conclude that there should be far greater safeguards when setting up joint accounts and taking joint loans even between marriage partners.

Banks should be forced to spell out in clear detail the onerous responsibilities being taken on by both parties.

It should also be made clear how difficult it can be to disentangle yourself from such affairs.

As things stand it is far too simple to take out financial liabilities in joint names with just a bit of cursory paper signing.

Tony Hazell writes for the Daily Mail's Money Mail section