There has been a lot of buzz around how Payment Protection Insurance sales have been mandated to be reverted and the payments to be returned to those who were wrongly sold the policy for several years. When the High Court ruled over this matter, there was nothing that the banks could do but to oblige and conduct reviews to weigh how valid the PPI claims were when they all started coming in.
As a consumer who depends on credit for most your financial responsibilities, you could have been one of the millions of people who were offered this product at the time you were taking out a loan, credit card, or mortgage, and were eventually pushed to buy it. If there was at the very least, some irregularities in the way PPI was sold to you, you should know that you can now file a claim to get the payment back, and the interest it incurred since it sat alongside your credit account.
If you’re unsure what PPI is and that you have it on your account, you can begin by checking your documents for any reference to the policy. PPI is an add-on financial service meant to help consumers cover their debt repayments at a time where they are unable to because of a prolonged illness, recuperation from an accident, or being made redundant from work. It’s a non-compulsory product applied alongside any form of finance agreement and is subject to eligibility requirements. Looking through your statements or agreement forms can help you find out how much you have approximately paid to the policy and for how long. Also, upon agreeing to sign up to PPI, a policy certificate would have to have been sent out to you. It will contain all the essential information that you need to know about the product and your option to cancel the policy within a cooling-off period will also be indicated there. These documents, aside from letting learn a whole lot about PPI, will also serve as proof once you begin making a claim.
When reclaiming your PPI payments, you have the option of hiring a PPI claims expert to do the work on your behalf or you can do it by yourself. Either of them follows the same process nevertheless and the same turnaround time for the results. What you need to begin with is to put the PPI claim in writing. Calling your bank to clarify the issue will be an option but for an investigation to begin, they will need a written request from you along with pieces of information and documents that you may deem to prove the mis-selling.
There are several ways in which banks and other insurance broker have devised to mis-sell PPI. People have been shocked and upset to have realised they were fooled into one of those selling tricks. To help you write your claim and describe how it was wrongly sold to you, you can refer to the following:
You were told that PPI was a compulsory product; was automatically added to your account without being told an opt-out alternative.
You were made to believe it increases your chance of getting a higher credit limit or loan amount; or told that your application is less likely to be approved without taking the insurance alongside.
You were not clearly informed of the costs and cooling-off period.
You were not informed of the terms and conditions, including extent of cover, exclusions, and limitations – this pertains to age limit, residence status, employment status, pre-existing medical conditions, having availed of policies of the same nature, etc.
Within 6 or 8 weeks after the bank receives your letter, they will have to review your PPI claim. They’ll go over your account details and take your reasons into reasonable consideration. A decision will be sent out to you that including the details of how they came about it. If after 8 weeks you failed to hear from them, or their decision was done in bad taste, you can still file a complaint and appeal your reclaim.
The Financial Ombudsman Service is an independent organisation that works to resolve disputes like this. When you lodge a formal complaint against your bank, the Ombudsman will review your case once more. They will get in touch with your bank to make further enquiries and ask you, too to send additional documents if needed.
If the FOS decides that your claim is valid, your provider will be required to give you back the payments you made for Payment Protection Insurance, its interest, and compensation if necessary.
You should not hesitate at this point to clarify this mis-selling issue with your bank and make things better by claiming your money back. To date, there is no deadline as to when and how far back you can make a claim for a mis-sold PPI policy but should you wait for a ruling that sets a timeline for such? As long as you are certain you were cheated into buying PPI, go ahead and gather your evidence and write to your bank about it so they can facilitate a review at the earliest possible time.