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FCA, there must not be a time limit on PPI complaints


The Financial Conduct Authority will soon publish a report into the payment protection insurance mis-selling scandal. However, we fear that a cut-off date for complaints is being considered.

A ‘time bar’ on payment protection insurance (PPI) complaints would be to the detriment of consumers. That’s why myself and Martin Lewis have written to the FCA’s acting chief executive Tracey McDermott, calling on her to scrap any plans for a cut-off date for consumers to reclaim mis-sold PPI.

You can read our open letter below:

Dear Tracey,

We write to express our serious concern at reports that the FCA is considering the introduction of a time bar on PPI complaints. We believe such a move would be to the detriment of consumers and provide the banks with an undeserved resolution to an issue that is entirely of their own making.

Both Money Saving Expert and Which? have spent a considerable amount of time working with banks to improve their customer communications and complaints handling procedures. However, not one of them has agreed to proactively contact all of their customers known to have been sold PPI. This would have triggered a limitation for complaints to the Financial Ombudsman Service and thus given the banks certainty about the timeframe for compensation.

While some banks have taken positive steps to deal with PPI claims and quickly resolve issues for their customers, there are two banks in particular that have high uphold rates for PPI complaints escalated to the Ombudsman, and have set aside substantial extra provisions for PPI mis-selling. This suggests that they are far from finished dealing with the issue. A time bar would therefore disproportionately benefit those banks that have been worst at resolving this problem.

Such an unprecedented move would also create a field day for claims management companies that would inevitably switch their attention to bringing claims in the courts.

Instead of consulting on a time bar, we urge you to redouble your efforts to ensure that all banks are handling complaints quickly and properly, and to make sure that consumers are given the compensation they are rightly due.

Yours sincerely,

Richard Lloyd, Executive Director, Which?
Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert


The addition of PPI to credit card balances etc. started many years ago and whilst many of us said no to it I am sure that at some point I was charged it but by whom I now cannot remember. Why should the consumer have to sort through years worth of paperwork (that is if they still have it) to make a claim. The onus should be on the banks etc. to search through their records and make the repayments.

Yes a justifiable cause to enlist behind. The logic of highlighting the laggards as being the beneficiaries is well put.

I have never had PPI insurance but presumably some customers chose to take it. Is the issue that other customers had it automatically applied to their account without being given a choice?

Rather pre-empting the reply, it would not be fair to prompt those who chose PPI to now go back on that decision and be compensated. Could the FCA not require banks to contact all customers who had not directly consented to take PPI and compensate them?

I don’t see why this should be left to go on for ever, but those customers who have already claims in place with those banks that have “high uphold rates” – presumably being difficult – should be not be affected by a time bar.

We had CCP (Credit Card Protection) some years ago. We were travelling a lot and paid around £20 a year so that if money or credit cards were stolen, one call would sort it all out for us. Luckily we never had to use it.

The company informed us we were entitled to a refund and sent us the forms to fill in. It was our choice to take out CCP and it would be wrong to claim it back.

I don’t know if it was a requirement that PPI/CCP companies inform customers they were entitled to a refund but ours certainly did.

I would have thought that as long as proceeding claims are not affected, PPI has gone on long enough. We have been inundated with advertising and information for years now and I can’t imagine anyone not being aware of it.

It would certainly put an end to one lot of cold calls and texts.

Totally agree with malcolm and alfa. This has gone on far too long. I know of people who purposely purchased PPI, cancelled after a few years because it got too expensive, but have now claimed their payments back. This campaign is adding to the awful ‘claims culture’ that is costing the country a fortune, in many cases unnecessarily.

The FCA is pushing ahead with a time-limit on PPI claims.

Our Richard Lloyd responds:

“It’s hugely disappointing that the regulator is pushing ahead with a blanket PPI time limit. Instead of rewarding the banks that have dragged their heels over paying out compensation, the FCA should be requiring firms to proactively seek out customers owed money. Relying on consumers to complain, when many were unaware they’ve been a victim of mis-selling, has clearly not worked.”


Presumably banks will have to finish claims already made, even if they have dragged their heels.

The PPI recompense seems to have been going on now for several years now and cannot surely go on for ever? The proviso would be that if no attempt has been made by a bank to deal with the problem. Is it the case then that some banks have avoided any kind of communication with customers? If so, perhaps the FCA should require them to put an appropriate large sum on deposit with them to cover possible outstanding legitimate claims. That might spur them into action?