Financial Ombudsman Service chief executive Natalie Ceeney has hit out at the “disappointing” treatment of customers who complain to financial services firms.
Speaking at a fringe event on rebuilding trust after PPI at the Labour conference in Manchester today, Ceeney said firms must stop treating people who complain as “problems”.
She said: “It is quite disappointing at FOS to see how people who complain are treated. We all know a lot has gone wrong. In the 250,000 complaints we have had around PPI, we have found in favour of consumers eight times out of 10. But if you read the press at the moment then you read about a compensation culture, consumers trying it on or rip-off Britain.
“Actually, the lesson we are seeing is that people were justified in complaining and you do not see evidence that people are trying their luck. We deal with more than a million customers a year and we have the power to say no to those that are trying it on and being vexatious. We find that in less than 1 per cent of cases that is the case.
“The best firms treat complaints as insight and an opportunity to put things right that have gone wrong. I would like that to be the way financial services treats everyone.”
Last week, FSA figures showed complaints against advisers jumped 27 per cent between 1 January and 30 June to 27,525.