FCA Proposes Changes to Complaints Handling Rules

Following publication of the Thematic Review paper last month the FCA has issued a Consultation Paper CP14_30 titled ‘Improving complaints handling’.

The proposals are intended to change the way we deal with complaints and how they are reported.

The FCA state ‘These proposed reforms will further improve the system, making it less bureaucratic for firms, easier for consumers and will provide us with improved intelligence on complaints.’

The proposed changes can be summarised as follows

  • The deadline for complaints resolved quickly will be extended to three working days from the existing one;
  • Respondent firms must write to customers if the complaint is resolved in three days advising them they consider the complaint to be resolved and FOS rights and website;
  • Complainants will be able to refer their complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service immediately after receiving a firm’s response rather than having to wait 8 weeks;
  • All complaints will have to be reported to the FCA;
  • Complaints return is to be amended and simplified for those firms with fewer than 500 complaints;
  • Firms will have to analyse complaint data and report causes and categories to the FCA;
  • This data will be published;
  • Firms cannot use ‘premium rate’ numbers for complaints;
  • The FCA is considering a 15 year ‘long stop’ on complaints to FOS.

All firms should be aware of the proposed changes and we encourage feedback to the FCA as requested in CP14_30.

The Consultation paper can be found here.


Important Note: ATEB news is intended to provide general information ONLY. The content, including any views expressed or guidance provided, does not replace the need to comply fully with FCA Rules and Guidance. Unless you have discussed news article content with ATEB, and specifically how it relates to your circumstances, then ATEB disclaims all liability and responsibility and actions arising from any reliance placed upon it. For the avoidance of doubt therefore, any reliance you place on such information without our consultation is at your own risk.

ATEB Compliance offers compliance and regulatory advice.

ATEB Suitability provides report writing software for the financial services market.

Our View

All firms should be aware of the proposed policy changes.

Action Required By You

We recommend that you take the opportunity to respond to the Consultation Paper and influence policy before 13 March 2015. 

  • Read the Consultation paper;
  • Respond to the Consultation paper as necessary;
  • Prepare for the changes.   
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About the Author

Steve is an ATEB Director and has a deep understanding of all matter regulatory, built up over his 30 years + in the industry. With a training background and a technical brain, he overseas numerous complex projects and client implementation work.

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