On the 6th November, the European Securities and Markets Authority and the European Banking Authority (EBA) jointly launched a consultation on guidelines for complaints handling in the securities and banking sectors. These guidelines will build on the existing guidelines on complaints handling by insurance undertakings published by the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority in June 2012. This consultation runs until 7th February 2014. The background to this is that the joint committee of the three European Supervisory Authorities (ESAs) is seeking to develop a harmonised approach to handling complaints. The three ESAs are doing so through guidelines that once adopted, will apply equally across all 28 Member States and will be the same for all three sectors of financial services. The objective is to provide EU consumers with a single set of complaint handling arrangements, irrespective of the type of product or service and of the geographical location of the firm in question. This will also allow firms to streamline and standardise their complaint handling arrangements and national regulators to supervise the same requirements across all sectors of financial services. The final guidelines are expected in the first quarter of 2014.