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Consumer groups get FCA super complaint powers

The Government has confirmed the names of the first consumer representative bodies to be given 'super-complainant' status for the financial services sector.

The organisations given super-complainant status are:

These four bodies will have the power to present complaints to the FCA if they believe there are features of a financial services market that are, or could be, significantly damaging the interests of consumers.

The super-complaints procedure was brought in by the Financial Services Act 2012, to strengthen the voice of consumers of financial services. Once a super-complainant has made a complaint to the FCA, the regulator must respond within 90 days, and can use their own powers to tackle any underlying issues identified as a result of the super-complaint.

For example, if the FCA agrees with the super-complainant that there is a significant problem, its powers include:

  • restricting financial services businesses from carrying out certain activities
  • making new rules to require firms to do things differently
  • taking enforcement action,
  • or launching a consumer redress scheme to put things right for consumers who have suffered detriment.

The FCA might choose to use its powers on the basis of the evidence presented, or may need to carry out its own investigation first.

Find out more information on the Government website.

Last updated 01/07/2016