PPI Q&A – Your Questions Answered by FCA’s Experts

I’ve been absolutely loving this PPI campaign I’ve been doing with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). We’re on a mission to get EVERYONE eligible to make a PPI claim – it’s free, takes a short time, you hardly need any info and people are getting MONEY back.

I’ve had someone message me saying they got £8,900 back! So please, please, PLEASE give it a go. All the information on how you do it in this blog post, Why Everyone Should Take The Time To Make a PPI Complaint NOW!

But some people still aren’t doing it! So, I asked you on that blog post and on social media what’s stopping you – and to ping over any questions and concern regarding PPI, for the wonderful experts at the FCA to answer. Thanks so much for sending your questions in!

So hopefully, if you’re thinking about making a claim, but there’s something putting you off – one of the below questions and answers will give you that nudge.

When was PPI mis-sold?

PPI was sold on a variety of products – and as many as 64 million policies have been sold in the UK. As most policies were sold between 1990 and 2010, it is unlikely to have PPI on your loan/credit card taken out in 2014 – however, you can still contact your provider to find out.

It’s worth noting that there’s also no time limit on how far back you can complain about the mis-selling of PPI – you can complain however long ago it was sold to you, and some policies date as far back as the 1970s. 

What products were sold with PPI?

If you’ve taken out or used one or more loan or credit product, such as the below, you might have had PPI:

  • Credit card
  • Store card
  • Catalogue credit
  • Mortgage 
  • Loan
  • Overdraft
  • Car finance or anything bought on credit
  • Home improvement loan

There are two reasons you might be eligible to complain and claim back money if you had PPI. Firstly, because PPI was mis-sold to you – for example, PPI could have been added to your loan or credit product without you knowing it, or you were pressured to take out PPI or told you must have it. Another reason to complain is because the bank or provider earned a high level of commission from the sale of PPI and didn’t tell you.

Is this really the final deadline? 

The deadline to start the complaint process about PPI is 29th August 2019. If you do not complain before this deadline you will lose the right to have your complaint assessed.

You can complain yourself – for free by contacting the provider who sold you PPI. There are a few ways you can do this:

  • Online – many providers have complaints tools on their website
  • Post – allow enough time for the complaint to reach your provider before the 29 August deadline. You can use the Financial Ombudsman Service’s free PPI complaint form
  • Telephone – be aware that phone lines will have limited hours of operation
  • In branch – be aware of the opening and closing times of your local branch

Allow yourself enough time to claim, especially as the run-up to the deadline is likely to be a particularly busy period for providers. However, within 8 weeks of your provider receiving your complaint, you should either receive a final response or a communication outlining when you can expect a final response.

After the 29 August 2019 deadline, you will still be able to complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS), for example, if you aren’t happy with your PPI provider’s final response or if you haven’t received a final response within eight weeks. However, you are only eligible to do so if:

  • You complained to your provider on or before 29 August 2019
  • Your provider gives its final response on or after 29 August 2019

You will need to submit your complaint to FOS within 6 months of receiving your PPI provider’s final response.

Where do I start? And what if I don’t have any paperwork? 

Casting your mind back to what might have caused you to take out a loan, credit card or other finance agreement may be easier if you think of life milestones. For instance, weddings, house moves, new cars and holidays are just some of the types of investments people commonly use credit to help with.

The next step is to identify your provider – you can search FCA’s comprehensive list at fca.org.uk/ppi, which can also help jog your memory. Here, you will find links to the relevant provider’s online PPI complaint form and further contact details. Most providers have free online tools that make PPI claims simple and will help you through the process. 

All you need to start your complaint is your name, date of birth and previous addresses. Most firms require customers to fill out only one form for multiple products sold by that firm, too. When filling out the form, provide as much detail as you can remember.

If you are unhappy with a provider’s final response, or if they have been obstructive or unhelpful in handling your claim, you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service. You will still be able to complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service after the 29 August deadline if you complained to your provider on or before 29 August 2019, or your provider gives its final response on or after 29 August 2019. 

What about claims management companies for PPI?

Providers are obliged to make complaining about PPI simple and will help you through the process at every step of the way. If you complain to the provider directly, your complaint will be free. 

Be aware that claims management companies (CMCs) can take up to 20% of the final amount you are eligible to get back. In April this year, the FCA took over the regulation of CMCs, and you should check the Register to ensure a CMC is authorised and regulated before contacting them.

If you use a CMC that is not regulated, you will not have access to the Financial Ombudsman Service or Financial Services Compensation Scheme if things go wrong. 

Can I still make a claim if I am bankrupt?

If you owned the policy when the order was made, it is unlikely you will receive any refund from a complaint about the sale of PPI if you have been declared bankrupt or sequestrated (in Scotland).  This includes if you have been discharged from bankruptcy or sequestration. 

This is because your PPI policy is considered part of the bankruptcy estate. The official receiver, insolvency practitioner or trustee therefore owns the policy, and has the right to claim any money owed (unless it has transferred the right back to you).

If you still want to complain about PPI, you must tell the official receiver, insolvency practitioner or trustee that you want to do so and whether you have previously complained. If you don’t tell them, your bankruptcy or sequestration restrictions may be extended, and you may be committing an offence.

You will also have to tell the provider about your bankruptcy, sequestration or insolvency order – it is likely the provider will pay the refund directly to the official receiver, insolvency practitioner or trustee.

What if my PPI provider no longer exists?

  • Hi Lotty, what do I do if my ppl claim is against the Leeds building society which was taken over?

If your provider has changed name or changed owner, you should check your paperwork and statements for information about a related bank or other provider that you can contact.  It is also worth checking the FCA website’s ‘Search for a provider’ page to see if your provider is listed there.  Where a business has taken over responsibility for PPI complaints from the original provider, you may be able to find details on the FCA website for the business now responsible for looking into your complaint. 

You should also look online to try to find more information about the change of name or owner. If you can’t find this information or still aren’t sure which provider to contact, you can contact the FCA by phone, web chat, email or on Twitter.

Additionally, if you think you were sold PPI by a provider that has gone out of business entirely, you may be able to claim on the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. To find out more, you can visit their webpage here.

So, make sure you submit your complaint before the final deadline on 29th August 2019! And remember, so long as you have submitted your complaint on or before the deadline, you will still be able to complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service within six months after the final response, if you aren’t happy with your PPI provider’s decision. 

Keep me updated on how it goes, and if you still have questions, you can throw them my way (I’m always around!) or get in touch with the FCA online at fca.org.uk/ppi, by calling the helpline on 0800 101 8800 or on twitter @ppifca.

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