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ombudsman news

issue 143

January 2018

Q&As

I’ve heard there have been some changes to how complaints should be handled. What’s happened and what does my business need to do?

On 13 January 2018, the revised Payment Services Directive – often referred to as “PSD2” – took effect in the UK. One consequence is that businesses should give their final response to complaints about payment services within 15 days (or 35 days in exceptional circumstances) – rather than the eight weeks they had previously.

There’s more information on the FCA’s website – and in its handbook in DISP 1.6.2A – about exactly what’s meant by “payment services”, and how you should handle any complaints you receive about them.

Some of the things that come under the umbrella of payment services were already covered by our service – such as direct debits and payments made by card. And there are also some things we didn’t previously cover, but now do. These include “account information services” – commonly known as open banking – and payment methods such as taking money directly from an account when buying goods online, and charging purchases to mobile phone bills. Either way, we’ll be able to get involved when the 15-day timeframe is up – or earlier, if you consent to us doing so.

Remember: when responding to complaints, you need to send your customers a copy of our leaflet, your complaint and the ombudsman. We’ve recently updated this – including adding a reference to the time limit for making a complaint about PPI. Soon you'll be able to order the latest version from our website (although it’s fine to run down any supplies you’ve got in stock).

If your business doesn’t have much contact with us – and you’ve got any more questions about how we work – you can contact our technical advice desk on 0207 964 1400, or at technical.advice@financial-ombudsman.org.uk.

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