If you think you’ve been mis-sold PPI (payment protection insurance), you need to move quickly as the PPI claims deadline is 29th August 2019. Payment protection insurance was designed to pay your loan premiums or credit card repayments if you lost your job or couldn’t work because you were ill, but it’s a product that’s been hugely mis-sold by banks and loan providers.
Q. What is the deadline for PPI claims?
A. The deadline is 29th August 2019 at 11.59pm. By that date you must have referred your complaint and obtained an acknowledgement that your complaint has been received by your provider or by the Financial Ombudsman Service. If you don’t, you can’t use the system set up by the financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), to make a claim and you will lose your right to have your complaint assessed.
Before the deadline, you can complain free of charge and you can take your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service if you’re not happy with the result of your claim. The Financial Ombudsman Service is a free-to-use complaints and dispute service that covers financial companies.
The FCA says you shouldn’t wait until the deadline and you should act sooner rather than later.
SAVVY TIP: If you complain via post, you will need to allow enough time for your complaint to reach your provider before the deadline; if you complain by telephone, lines will close before midnight and if you complain online, there may be delays because of an increase of submissions close to the deadline.
SAVVY WARNING!: for some people, time will run out sooner than 29th August 2019:
- You will generally run out of time to complain about mis-selling three years after you received a letter from your provider warning you about it;
- or three years after you made an insurance claim on your PPI policy that was rejected by the insurer.
Q. What if I miss the deadline?
A. If you want to complain after the deadline, you may still be able to through the courts, but there may be time limits that apply on when you can make the claim and it could cost you money in court fees and legal expenses.
You may also have the right to complain to your bank or other provider, or to the Financial Ombudsman Service, after the deadline if you experienced ‘exceptional circumstances’, such as being incapacitated during the period when you could have complained. The Financial Ombudsman Service has more on ‘exceptional circumstances’ on its website.
Q. Why is a deadline being imposed?
A. The financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), says that a deadline for payment protection insurance mis-selling claims was introduced so that there is ‘finality and certainty’ for the industry (especially banks).
It also said, oddly, in my opinion, that it may encourage people to complain directly to banks rather than using claims management companies and that it may improve the efficiency of PPI complaints handling. I don’t follow the logic for this at all.
It first mentioned this idea in 2015 and, after a consultation, decided to set the date at August 29th 2019. After that you won’t be able to complain about PPI that’s been mis-sold, although you will still be able to take legal action against a bank, if you choose.
Q. Where can I get more information?
A. You can read more about how to complain about PPIon the FCA’s website. You can also call them for help and advice on 0800 101 8800, Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm and Saturday 9am to 1pm, or you can contact them via web chat. They’re also on Twitter @ppifca.
Q. Will this mean I get plagued by more PPI claims companies in the run up to the deadline?
A. I’m afraid it is possible. It’s worth knowing that since 10th July 2018, the Financial Guidance and Claims Act 2018 prohibits claims management companies and legal services providers charging fees of more than 20% (excluding VAT) for successful PPI claims, and restricts charges where no award is recovered.
SAVVY TIP: There are lots of claims management companies that will sort out your claim, but there’s no need to use them as you can claim yourself. Some haven’t done the job they’ve been supposed to or have gone out of business.
Q. Is there a particular issue for women?
A. The regulator, the FCA, says that men are more likely to have bought PPI, but also more likely to have complained. Women in the UK are less likely than men to complain. The FCA says this is due to slightly lower financial knowledge and familiarity.
The FCA says that its publicity campaign will be effective for both women and men. It was tested on women-only groups and it will re-test the publicity.
Q. How do I complain?
A. If you think you may have been mis-sold PPI in the past, you should contact your bank, loan or credit card provider. Most banks and credit card providers have information on their websites about making a complaint about PPI. We have a list of all the banks’ PPI complaints sections in my article Payment protection insurance – how to reclaim mis-sold PPI for free.
SAVVY TIP: If you’ve complained in the past and your complaint was rejected, you may be able to complain again. See the section titled ‘Don’t give up!’ at the bottom of the article.
You can download the SavvyWoman PPI complaints letter and you can send this letter to your bank or PPI provider.
Find out if you are eligible and how you can make a complaint in my article.
Q. How much compensation will I get?
A. The amount of compensation will depend on the premiums you paid and the effect that taking out PPI had on you. The overriding principle is that you should be put back in the position you would have been in if you’d not taken out the PPI.
That may mean you get your PPI premiums back plus statutory interest (that’s interest that the regulator says the companies must pay). This is paid at a simple rate of 8% a year (this means the interest isn’t compounded).
But you could get much more if you paid extra charges or costs because of the PPI policy. You don’t have to pay tax on the PPI compensation but may have tax deducted from the interest.
Don’t give up!
You can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service if your bank or lender rejects your complaint. And if you’ve complained before and your complaint was rejected, you may be able to complain again. Why? If the bank or card provider earned a high level of commission for selling you the PPI policy, but didn’t tell you. This is often referred to as Plevin (after a court case). The regulator, the FCA, says that a ‘high level’ of commission means more than half of what you paid in premiums for the PPI policy.
You can find out more about this on the FCA website.
SAVVY TIP: You probably won’t know how much commission you paid, but the banks or credit card companies should know this. The financial regulator, the FCA, has told them they must write to people who were mis-sold in this way.
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