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Just one in five complaints about potential mis-sold PPI made so far

The Financial Conduct Authority also revealed that it now estimates that 52m to 64m PPI policies were sold to around 30m consumers between 1990 and 2010. It is unclear how many of these policies were mis-sold. This compares with the regulator’s 2014 estimate of 45m policies, worth £44bn in premiums.

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The FCA said 13m genuine PPI complaints had been made so far, and banks have paid out £26.2bn in compensation to customers. More than 12m customers received payouts between April 2011 and November 2015, according to the National Audit Office.

The new PPI policy figures emerged from a freedom of information request made by Mark Davies, an adviser to a claims management company, We Fight Any Claim. He said the firm would call for a judicial review of how the regulator has handled the scandal.

He said the FCA’s handling of the scandal was “unlawful, detrimental to tens of millions of consumers, and contrary to FCA’s statutory objective of protecting consumers”. He said last week he handled a £16,000 compensation claim relating to a PPI policy sold alongside a storecard. Davies’ firm charges a 29% fee including VAT on any compensation awarded.

Martin Lewis, founder of MoneySavingExpert.com, branded the FCA’s deadline a mistake. He said that in more than half of all cases in the last 12 months where a PPI claim had been rejected by a bank but then taken to the independent ombudsman, the rejection is overturned

“Until we can trust banks to deal with complaints fairly in the first instance, this move to protect their balance sheets should not happen. It is putting the protection of the financial industry ahead of consumers. Many banks make it outrageously hard for people to find out if they ever had PPI.”

Vickie Sheriff, of consumer group Which?, said: “It’s been clear for years that the banks should be working much harder to resolve PPI claims fairly. The current process has been wholly inadequate and driven too many consumers to use claims management companies.”

But Andrew Bailey, chief executive of the FCA, defended its decision: “Putting in place a deadline and campaign will mean people who were potentially mis-sold PPI will be prompted to take action rather than put it off. We believe that two years is a reasonable time for consumers to decide whether they wish to make a complaint.”

The FCA said it would launch a two-year publicity campaign in August to raise awareness. The £42m bill will be paid by the banks.

The regulator also said that consumers have new grounds to complain about PPI if they were not told about commission being paid when they were sold the policy, under the “Plevin rule”. Consumers could get compensation for any commission paid above 50% of the PPI value. All banks must write to people whose claims have been rejected and who paid commission.

The average PPI payout is £2,000, although some people received a lot more. The insurance was sold alongside loans, mortgages and other credit deals but in many cases, clauses in the policies meant customers were unable to make a claim, and many people were unaware that PPI had been added.

Citizens Advice welcomed the deadline, saying it “will help to draw a line under this ongoing scandal”. Its chief executive, Gillian Guy, added: “We’re still very concerned about fees charged by claims management firms for handling people’s PPI complaints – in some cases this can be almost half of people’s compensation – despite the fact that they can claim for free.

“To prevent firms using the FCA’s deadline to swamp people with cold calls, and ensure consumers get more of the compensation they deserve – the claims management regulator should set a limit on the amount firms can charge for handling claims by the time the deadline comes into effect.”

Article taken from – The Guardian

Posted by M White on 03 Mar 2017

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