The end of PPI complaints is nigh.
The FCA is considering implementing a two-year deadline for customers to file PPI complaints, as it attempts to draw a line under the scandal.
The watchdog said it had noticed a rise in the number of complaints relating to pre-2005 “and even pre-2000” cases, but evidence was “likely to have significant gaps and recollections and oral evidence are becoming increasingly stale”.
It also noted that there was a “high and growing” number of complaints made through claims management companies, for which the customer was charged.
A significant proportion of complaints made turn out not to have involved a PPI sale, the FCA said. There are also a number of people who have told the watchdog they plan to make a complaint but have not yet done so.
“The open-ended nature of the complaints-led approach appears to contribute to this consumer inertia,” it explained. “It does not incentivise consumers to check whether they had or have PPI or progress complaints in a timely fashion.”
Any new rule would not come into force before spring 2016 and consumers would have until spring 2018 to file any complaints.
The FCA said it would propose a campaign to prompt customers to make a complaint ahead of the deadline, including a proposed fee rule concerning the funding of the proposed communications campaign. It is hoped the campaign would also encourage individuals to complain directly to the firms involved, rather than through a management company.
So far more than £20bn has been paid out in compensation to 10m customers.
The FCA also hopes this could encourage more consumers to complain directly to the firms, rather than using and paying claims management companies.