The results of the FCA’s thematic review concerning whether consumers are being treated fairly in relation to refunds for unauthorised transactions were published on 28 July 2015 (TR15/10: Fair treatment for consumers who suffer unauthorised transactions).  The review focused on current accounts and credit cards, being the core services used by consumers, and involved the assessment of 10 regulated firms providing those core services to explore if the consumer protections in place were working.

The FCA found that the firms were generally meeting their legal requirements under the legislation (that is, the Payment Services Regulations 2009 (SI 2009/209), the Consumer Credit Act 1974 and the FCA handbook).  Efforts were also being made to deliver fair outcomes for consumers, which included erring on the customer’s side when reviewing claims, handling complex claims on a case-by-case basis and not routinely declining claims on the basis of customer ‘non-compliance’ with prescriptive security requirements.

What this means for you

Businesses need to continue to monitor whether they are treating their customers fairly.  While the FCA’s findings were largely positive, minor problems were noted around how some of the firms organised their decision making, with examples including deficient policies for complex cases and a heavy reliance on experienced staff.  There were also improvements that could be made in terms of improving the quality of data that was captured on the outcome of claims.