Our Approach to Consumers

Our Future Approach to Consumers
Consultation closed
Our Approach to Consumers

In November 2017, we published Our Future Approach to Consumers consultation paper. This was the start of a discussion with our many stakeholders on our Approach to regulating for retail consumers. We received a wide range of responses and we have used the responses to inform our Approach to Consumers and feedback statement.

Our Approach to Consumers document, published today, aims to address concerns raised in the feedback to the consultation. It sets out our vision for well-functioning markets for consumers and the conditions we want to see to achieve this. We also explain how we use our powers and tools to protect consumers, and commit to review and adapt these to ensure we achieve the greatest impact for consumers.

To address the key challenges:

  • We have decided to revert to the original definition of vulnerability from Occasional Paper No 8, which defines a vulnerable consumer as: 'someone who, due to their personal circumstances, is especially susceptible to detriment, particularly when a firm is not acting with appropriate levels of care'.
  • We are publishing a Discussion Paper alongside this Approach document. We’re interested in hearing from any parties on the case for and against introducing a Duty of Care on firms and seeking views on what form such a provision might take, as well as consequential issues arising from adopting it. This will help us assess whether change is needed to help prevent harm to consumers and, if so, what form it could take.
  • We plan to consult early next year on guidance for firms on the identification and treatment of vulnerable consumers. This is to provide clarity on our expectations of firms and ensure good outcomes for consumers, particularly vulnerable consumers.

Next steps

We welcome views, continuing discussion and communication on how we can achieve our vision and deliver our consumer protection objective even more effectively for consumers now and in the future.

To get in touch, please contact us at [email protected]

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