Consumers have made a record number of financial complaints during the last year, according to new data released by the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).
One in six people across the UK said they had a problem with a financial product or service according to figures from the 2013/14 FOS annual review.
In what has been a record year for the service, the FOS has settled 518,778 disputes – more than double that of the previous year.
The service answered a total of 2.3 million enquiries from consumers amounting to around 40,000 enquiries every week.
The FOS is an independent service which settles disputes between consumers and financial companies and can act as an alternative to taking a complaint to court.
For more information, find out if you can take your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
PPI most popular financial complaint
Payment protection insurance (PPI) made up 78% of all cases dealt with by the FOS, with the number of PPI complaints rising 6% to almost 400,000.
PPI is supposed to cover your debt repayments if you can’t work, but many policies were mis-sold.
If you believe you have been mis-sold PPI, you don’t need to go to a claims management company. The Which? Consumer Rights website has a free PPI tool you can use to reclaim your money.
Four of the UK’s largest banking groups accounted for 63% of all complaints received. If you have a dispute with your bank, find out where you should go with your bank complaint.
How to take a complaint to the ombudsman
Before contacting the FOS, you’ll need to go through the internal complaints procedure of the financial provider you’re complaining about.
If your provider hasn’t resolved your complaint within eight weeks, or has rejected it, you can take it to the FOS. The FOS found in favour of consumers in 58% of all cases dealt with last year.
Use our free template letter to contact the FOS about a bank dispute.