We are proposing a revised version of our Complaints Scheme which is more user friendly, using plain language to make it more accessible. This is a joint consultation with the Bank of England (the Bank) and the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), as the Scheme covers all three regulators.
Why we are consulting
We want to simplify the wording of the Scheme and make it more accessible to its main users – consumers and small businesses – as well as others.
At the same time, we are proposing a more detailed description of our approach to ex-gratia compensatory payments (i.e. goodwill payments). We think this more detailed description will help complainants understand what they can and cannot expect from the Scheme.
Who this applies to
This consultation may be of interest to anyone who is a potential or actual complainant under the Scheme. This includes regulated businesses and consumers of financial services.
It may also interest consumer advocates and action groups, trade associations, and politicians, among others.
Background to the Complaints Scheme
The Financial Services Act 2012 requires the Regulators to have in place arrangements to investigate complaints against them, as opposed to complaints against the businesses they regulate.
The Scheme also describes the role of the independent Complaints Commissioner. The current version of the Scheme dates in substance from 2013.
Next steps: June 2021 update
Following closure of the consultation on proposals to amend the Complaints Scheme, the Regulators are currently analysing the responses received so that they can take further decisions about the proposals.
In the meantime, the Regulators are conscious of the concerns raised by some respondents regarding the timing of the amendments to the Scheme. In light of this, the Regulators’ policy statement on the consultation and any changes to the Scheme will not be published until towards the end of 2021. This will allow time for the publication of the report following the independent review of the FSA/FCA’s supervisory intervention on Interest Rate Hedging Products and for any associated complaints to be lodged for consideration under the present Scheme.