The Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman (FSPO) has published 394 legally binding decisions, issued throughout 2019.
The FSPO used informal mediation to successfully resolve most of the complaints closed in 2019.
Of the 439 complaints closed by way of formal investigation which resulted in a legally binding decision, 201 were either fully, substantially or partially upheld, while 238 were not upheld.
The FSPO deals with a wide range of complaints relating to insurance, banking, credit facilities and investments as well as pensions.
Some examples of directions made by the Ombudsman in 2019 include:
- Compensation of €15,000 after a lender failed to update an individual’s Irish Credit Bureau rating to show that their debt was clear, negatively affecting their credit rating,
- Compensation of €35,000 for a couple after a bank overcharged them interest and failed to clearly state the correct interest rate on their loan,
- Compensation of €15,000 to a company after a bank threatened to close its bank account due to ‘outstanding debt,’ which turned out to be an error,
- Compensation of €9,000 to a complainant after a car insurer cancelled their policy when a document requested by the insurer was blocked by its own firewall,
- A direction to pay veterinary costs and compensation of €300 for a couple with a dog whose pet insurer rejected the claim due to the pet’s weight,
- Compensation of €3,000 for an individual who received less than she expected, when she made a claim on a dental policy, because of the poor information given to her by the insurer.
FSPO was established in January 2018.
The Ombudsman has also published a Digest of his 2019 decisions. This publication includes summaries of 33 decisions made in relation to complaints against financial service providers and three case studies of decisions made in relation to complaints against pension providers.
Ombudsman, Ger Deering (pictured) said
“I believe it will be evident to anyone who reads these decisions that the work of my office can has a very profound impact on many of those who use our services. I believe that these decisions play a very important role in improving the conduct of financial service providers.
“The decisions published give a sense of the breadth and complexity of the issues we address and resolve. I hope that having access to these decisions will assist consumers and their advocates and financial service providers to avoid and resolve disputes.”
The Ombudsman has decided to separately publish 25 legally binding tracker mortgage decisions by the beginning of March 2020.