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CII fear that FOS changes will not protect innocent firms

The CII has raised fears that ten free cases from the Financial Ombudsman Service will not be enough to protect innocent firms.
The FOS has tabled 10 options following persistent lobbying to scrap the current system where firms have to pay a case fee if they receive more than two complaints, regardless of whether or not the complaints are upheld.
Aifa is backing Option H, which would allow firms 10 free cases a year. A flat annual fee of about £230 would be levied on all firms while case fees of £480 would be charged after the tenth complaint.
But the CII, while it supports some aspects of Option H, says case fees for guilty firms should be increased to £1080 after ten free cases to act as more of a disincentive for sloppy complaints handling.
CII group pubic affairs director John Ellis says it is also worried that some firms will receive more than ten free cases despite not doing anything wrong. He says: “Our worry is that a dreadful thing will happen in the future, exacerbated by claim chasers which will cause innocent firms to receive more then 10 free cases and have to pay a fee.”
“We should not be complacently accept that some firms receive a lot of complaints. The fine for guilty firms should be revised to over £1000 to act as a disincentive for shoddy complaints handling.”


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