Earlier this month the FCA and PRA published a consultation paper on changes to the complaints scheme operated by the Bank of England, the FCA and the PRA (the regulators) in accordance with section 87 of the Financial Services Act 2012 (the FS Act). New subsections 9A and 9B have been inserted into section 87 of the FS Act (investigations of complaints against regulators) in accordance with section 20 of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015. It should be noted that although an annual report is already published by the Complaints Commissioner section 87 of the FS Act sets out more detailed requirements.

Following the introduction of the new subsections the independent Complaints Commissioner appointed by the regulators and approved by Her Majesty’s Treasury (the Treasury) is now required to produce an annual report which will analyse the regulators’ handling of complaints.

Where the annual report makes recommendations or criticisms in relation to the handling of complaints by the regulators, each regulator must publish a response and send a copy to both the Complaints Commissioner and the Treasury. The Treasury will put the report and any responses before Parliament.

Comments on the consultation paper should be provided by 9 March 2016 and the new legislative requirements which will become part of the complaints scheme are expected to be published in a Policy Statement in March 2016.