Financial Ombudsman was set up in 2001 under the financial services and markets act. Its main mandate is to act a mediator between consumers and the financial sector. Mainly, it intervenes on behalf of the consumer in most financial issues ranging from banking to insurance to pensions to investments and credit cards among others. One of the issues that brought the financial ombudsman to the limelight was mis-selling of PPI by financial service providers.
PPI otherwise known as payment protection insurance is a cover taken out by consumers as a precaution measure. It is aimed at providing a means of repayment of loans and other financial obligations if the consumer encounters circumstances that will disallow making payments to a loan or credit card to name but a few. These circumstances include death, loss of employment, illness, and accidents among others.
Financial ombudsman and PPI
Initially, many people did not know about the financial ombudsman until the financial services sector started mis-selling PPI. Mis-selling PPI involves selling the protection cover to consumers without sufficient information, giving misleading information, or selling the cover to people who do not qualify thus cannot claim in any eventualities. Financial ombudsman comes in when a claim made by the consumer have been declined by the financial service provider. The ombudsman investigates, and intervenes on the consumer’s behalf leading to a settlement. However, the consumer can still take the service provider to court if not satisfied with results.
Challenges of the Ombudsman in PPI claims
The main challenge of the financial ombudsman when making claims is the time that it takes. Due to the large number of complaints forwarded to the ombudsman, and the limited number of staffing the cases might take up a long time before a solution is reached. Moreover, financial service providers have recently started rejecting some of the claims made by the ombudsman leading to further delay. The impartiality of the financial ombudsman staffs have also been questioned as most worked in the financial services sector.
Processing PPI through Ombudsman
The first step before making a claim with the financial ombudsman is filing the claim with the service provider in question. If the claim is rejected then you can proceed to the financial ombudsman. There is no need to involve a professional in this case as the processes to follow are simple enough. Fill in the right forms and provide sufficient evidence and wait for your case to be investigated and solved. If you are not confident with filling the forms, the ombudsman provides information and any assistance you might need. All services offered by the ombudsman are free.
Even though the financial ombudsman has many challenges, the body handles cases with utmost integrity and with the consumer in mind. The body offers numerous services other than making PPI claims, including investigations into numerous financial cases, transmitting information to consumers as well as ensuring the standards of financial services are upheld all the while maintain ma high level of impartiality.