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You could soon be fending off even more annoying PPI calls if a proposed time limit on complaints is brought in. Consumer rights champion Which? warns that the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)’s proposed two-year deadline for claiming on mis-sold payment protection insurance (PPI) could cause a boatload of annoyance.
The problem is that, although you can claim PPI compensation directly from the bank, nearly half of all claims are made by claim management companies (CMCs) which take a third of your compensation in return for doing the legwork. These CMCs are the companies who call you relentlessly all day every day, with robotic voices telling you in clipped tones that you could be owed money.
In 2015 there were 32,739 complaints to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) about these calls, and according to Which? that’s up 85% from 2014. Which? warns that, “It is highly likely that introducing a time-limit for PPI complaints will simply compound these issues and result in a huge increase in nuisance calls from CMCs.”
But PPI compensation is big business; banks have already paid out over £3 billion in compensation and the major banks are said to have set aside £32 billion for future claims. There’s also a fear that introducing the deadline, which could fall as early as 2018, could set a “dangerous precedent”, seeing banks drag their heels in paying out compensation with little incentive to reimburse customers who have been duped.
A Which? spokesperson said, “The regulator should instead bring forward new proposals so that banks make it more straightforward for people to make a claim without a costly CMC and get back all the money they are rightly owed. “We also need to see tougher regulation of CMCs put in place without delay, otherwise nuisance calls will increase as they try to cash in on the regulators plans.”
An FCA spokeswoman said: “We are currently considering the responses we received during our consultation and we have made no final decisions yet. “The consultation process was designed to encourage all stakeholders to share their views so they can be properly considered and the right policy put in place as a result.”