Everyday financial concerns are expected to drive complaints to the Financial Ombudsman Service in the year ahead

Press release

We set out trends for new complaints we expect to see in 2024/25 in our Plans and Budget Consultation. The consultation is currently open and closes on 30 January 2024.

  • Were expecting more than 181,000 consumer complaints in the next financial year.
  • Many of these complaints will be driven by everyday issues such as unaffordable lending, travel and motor insurance, and fraud and scam cases.
  • The complaint trends come as we seek feedback on new proposed charges for professional representatives.

The plans highlight the key personal finance issues where we expect to see new complaints about financial providers. These include:

  • A continued rise in disputed transactions, driven by the increasing volume of financial fraud and scams.
  • Cost-of-living pressures leading to a rise in irresponsible and unaffordable lending complaints.
  • A rise in account closure complaints prompted by higher public awareness of the issue.
  • Motor insurance complaints continuing at a high level, partly due to widescale delays in being able to repair vehicles and impact of second hand car market on valuations.
  • Further complaints about car finance commission arrangements which will be considered in light of changes made by the FCA to complaint-handling rules in this area.

Commenting on the trends set out in our plans, Abby Thomas, Chief Executive and Chief Ombudsman, said:

Given cost-of-living pressures it’s imperative that, now more than ever, consumers understand their finances and are treated fairly and transparently by financial service providers.

Looking ahead we know our service will see a high level of complaints and that those disputes will likely focus on the critical issues that impact people’s everyday lives. This includes perceived unaffordable lending, mortgages and complaints about people’s savings and current accounts.

We are planning to be more ambitious next year, resolving complaints more quickly and improving the service we offer. At a time when all businesses are facing financial pressures, we are also reducing the cost of our service to industry.”

In the next financial year we set a new target of resolving 90% of cases within five months. This builds on the progress we have made to get consumers and businesses answers to disputes as quickly as possible while maintaining the quality of judgements.

The consultation sets out our plans to reduce the cost of the service to industry in the year ahead. It proposes to reduce the case fee by £100 per case to £650 and reduce its compulsory and voluntary jurisdiction levies on businesses. This results in an effective £60 million reduction in case fee and levy costs to businesses, once inflation and increases in the number of cases resolved are taken into consideration.

We are also seeking feedback on proposed new charges for professional representatives for bringing cases to us. Were inviting views on whether and how a charging regime might be implemented, including on the level of any fee itself; the impact on complaint volumes, the potential impact on different groups of complainants, and the lead time required for businesses and professional representatives to be ready.

Notes to editors

  1. We will publish our Final Plans and Budget for 2024/25 in April 2024 after it has been approved by the Financial Conduct Authority.

About the Financial Ombudsman Service

We were set up by Parliament to resolve individual complaints between financial businesses and their customers on a fair and reasonable basis, as a free alternative to the courts. It can look into problems involving most types of money matters. It is committed to sharing insight and experience to encourage fairness and confidence in financial services.

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