More than half of consumers think it’s easier to use a claims management company to make a Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) claim than go directly to their bank, new Which? research has found, as the consumer champion launches a free tool that makes PPI compensation claims as easy as possible ahead of the deadline.
With the start of a two-year time limit for claiming compensation looming on the 29th August, Which? is urging those who think they have a claim to use its free revamped online PPI tool to recoup some of the £35 billion set aside by banks for the scandal – available at: www.which.co.uk/ppi
New Which? research found that people are put off by the prospect of complicated and lengthy paperwork, with one in three (29%) people who had a relevant financial product thinking it would be very difficult to check if they had been sold PPI.
Which?’s PPI tool has been developed closely with Barclays bank to make the process of reclaiming mis-sold PPI compensation as quick and easy as possible, while ensuring that banks have the right information to start a claim. Other major banks and building societies have now signed up to the tool, which has already helped consumers to claim nearly £500,000 in PPI compensation, include Santander, HSBC, RBS, Lloyds Banking Group and Nationwide.
Which? research also found that more people (54%) thought it would be easier to claim PPI compensation through a claims management company (CMC), than direct from their bank (45%).
The free tool offers a simple online form that guides people through the information they need to make a PPI claim and sends the claim direct to their PPI provider, regardless of whether they have their paperwork or not. Claimants do not have to provide lots of information upfront, which is helpful if they can’t remember if they had PPI. The tool also helps them find out what information they can provide to speed up their claim. If successful, consumers get to keep 100% of their compensation, whereas CMCs can charge fees of up to a third of the compensation offered.
As the Financial Conduct Authority prepares to launch a major communications campaign alerting people to the 2019 deadline for making a PPI claim, Which? is calling on the regulator to encourage and signpost people to free tools rather than simply directing consumers to banks’ own websites.
Gareth Shaw, Which? money expert, said:
“For years, an inadequate PPI claims process has driven too many people to use claims management companies. With a deadline now set for the victims of this mis-selling scandal to make a claim, it’s encouraging to see that some of the UK’s biggest banks and building societies are upping their game to help customers claim back the money they are owed.
“We’re urging consumers to use our free PPI claim tool, for other banks to sign up and for the regulator to make free-to-use tools a more central part of its communications campaign.”
Bob Cliff, MD, Advocacy Team, Barclays, said:
“We want to make it as easy as possible for any customer to submit a PPI complaint, and we are pleased to be partnering with Which? to provide another simple way for customers to get in touch to raise any concerns they might have.”
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Notes to Editors:
Which?’s PPI tool is available to view and use at: www.which.co.uk/ppi
The Which? PPI tool is a simple online form that guides people through the information they need to make a PPI claim and sends the claim direct to their PPI provider, regardless of whether they have any of the paperwork or not. Major banks and building societies now signed up to the tool include Barclays, Santander, HSBC (M&S Bank, First Direct, John Lewis, HSBC), RBS (Natwest, Ulster Bank), Lloyds Banking Group (Halifax, Bank of Scotland) and Nationwide.
Which?’s PPI tool is fully optimised for use on a mobile
Research: Populus polled a total of 2,068 general population respondents, via an online omnibus survey. Fieldwork was carried out between the 10th and 12th of February 2017. Respondents were asked whether they had ever taken out one or more of the following financial products: personal loan, credit card, a mortgage, store card, car finance or products bought on hire purchase. These are the categories that we feel had a high prevalence of PPI. We have referred this sample of respondents as those with a ‘relevant financial product’.
PPI set aside: The total amount set aside by the big five banks alone for PPI compensation is £35.3 billion, as at 1 March 2017. The breakdown is: Lloyds Banking Group (£17bn), Barclays (£8.6bn), RBS (£4.9bn), HSBC (£3.3bn), Santander (£1.4bn).
Earlier this year, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) confirmed that consumers that had been mis-sold PPI will only have until August 2019 to claim the money they are owed.
Which? PPI compensation tool: Which?’s PPI claims tool and template letter has helped people claim back a total of £483,434. The mean payout for successful claimants was £5,371, the largest single payout was £50,006.94, which was initially refused by Santander but overturned by the Financial Ombudsman Service.
I claimed on behalf of a friend using Which?’s PPI tool and at end of November the bank offered £5,300.00 in full and final settlement, which they accepted. There is no need to use a claims management company, Which?’s tool is straightforward to use.
I used Which?’s tool with immediate good results. It was the minimum of trouble for me and a letter with an acceptable offer of compensation from the relevant bank arrived within 10 days.
I’ve saved myself about £500 by sending off the PPI template from the Which? website, rather than using one of those companies that keep calling you with an automated phone system, which is very annoying. The total time from sending the form off to getting the money into my account was about 14 days.
Last year, I came across a couple of loan agreement forms which had been paid in full. One ended in 2003 the other 2007. After completing the online PPI form I was awarded a total of just over £6,500 without having to pay a third party to do the same thing. Thanks Which? for my unexpected windfall.