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Banks' PPI deadline talks collapse

Talks aimed at bringing an end to claims against banks for payment protection insurance mis-selling have failed, after Britain’s largest lenders were unable to reach an agreement with consumer groups.

Anthony Browne, chief executive of the BBA, had been leading talks aimed at reaching a deal on a deadline for PPI claims.

Banks had hoped to agree a deadline for PPI compensation as part of a deal that would have seen the industry fund a major national advertising campaign aimed at ensuring any customers who had not already claimed were made aware they could do so.

However, the talks ended recently without an agreement, meaning lenders potentially face several more years of handling PPI claims as the industry continues to be flooded with compensation claims from customers.

The British Bankers’ Association, the trade body of the banking industry, had been leading the negotiations, but officials there are understood to have concluded that a deal was impossible, due to differences of opinion between the lenders themselves and leading consumer groups.

“The whole thing is being wound down as it has become clear there is no way we are going to get an agreement,” said one source close to the talks.

The failure of the BBA deal came as Lloyds Banking Group was forced to apologise for failures in its handling of PPI claims after an investigation by The Times uncovered serious failings in its handling of complaints.

Lloyds, which is 39pc owned by the state, has set aside more money than any other bank to compensate customers mis-sold PPI with its current provision standing at £6.7bn.

According to a reporter who worked undercover at a Lloyds complaints handling centre run for the bank by Deloitte, staff there were told some signatures on customer loan agreements had been forged, but the majority of PPI complainants would give up if their claims were rejected first time around.

In a statement, Lloyds said it had become “aware of issues” at the Royal Mint Court complaints centre earlier this year and confirmed that its contract with Deloitte had been “concluded” last month.

The bank added: “Some of the comments made by trainers to The Times reporter are not endorsed by Lloyds Banking Group and we believe they do not reflect our high training standards or our policies. We believe the comments to be isolated and they are now being addressed.

“Following the discovery of these issues and under the guidance of a new supplier the employees are currently undergoing retraining in line with our policies and procedures.”

Lloyds has so far paid out £4.3bn in compensation to 1.3m customers mis-sold PPI policies. Antonio Horta-Osorio, chief executive of Lloyds, prompted the multi-billion payout after he dropped the bank’s support for a BBA-led attempt to legally challenge PPI payouts.

Mr Horta-Osorio’s move led to all the UK’s other major banks removing their backing for the legal challenge and beginning to compensate customers.

Since then, lenders have put aside about £12bn against PPI claims, but it is thought that this figure could increase.

Natalie Ceeney, chief executive of the Financial Ombudsman Service, claimed last month that only 10pc of customers ever sold a PPI policy had so far made a claim for compensation. Ms Ceeney criticised the banks for “demonising customers” and said the ombudsman would be hiring a further 1,000 staff in the next six months to help deal with PPI claims.

Article taken from – The Telegrapgh

If you think you may have a claim call Creditline Financial on 01733 393399 and speak to one of our expert claim handlers.

Posted by Jay Beecher on 12 Jun 2013

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