Today, credit card lender Vanquis has been ordered to pay almost £170m in compensation after failing to disclose the full price of an add-on product, called Repayment Option Plan (ROP)
The UK’s financial regulator, Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), also imposed a £2m fine on the lender in addition to the compensation, which amounts to the charges not disclosed to customers when they bought the ROP.
In total, this will affect around 1.2 million customers dating back to 2003, with the total amount refunded to customers around £168m.
In most cases, existing customers will receive a credit on their account. Alternatively, past customers who are no longer with Vanquis may receive a cheque.
If you’re a customer with Vanquis
For current Vanquis customers, Vanquis aims to process refunds inside 90 days. If you’re due a refund, you don’t need to do anything to initiate the process.
Vanquis will take all the necessary steps to proactively contact customers and will work to process refunds as quickly as possible.
If you were a customer with Vanquis
For past customers, Vanquis aims to process refunds within 180 days.
Vanquis retains all records and documentation in line with its legal and regulatory obligations. So, while claims date back to 2003, Vanquis is only required to keep records for six years.
Vanquis has said it will be making every effort to trace and contact historic customers who are entitled to a refund but who are longer with them.
If you’re concerned about not being contacted, Vanquis has a form on its website you can fill out.
If you prefer you can also write to Vanquis. Especially if you’ve closed your account or you’re worried Vanquis don’t have your latest address.
Vanquis also say that adding your latest contact number to the letter will help, too.
The address for contacting Vanquis is:
Vanquis Repayment Option Plan
PO Box 399
What did Vanquis do wrong?
When selling the ROP, Vanquis told customers how the product worked and what the monthly charge was.
But it didn’t inform customers that the full cost of the product included an interest component where there was an end-of-month unpaid balance on their credit card.
The UK’s financial regulator believes that Vanquis should have been clearer when selling ROP over the phone.
It should have explained that the product was a purchase transaction and so would attract interest in the event the customer didn’t pay their bill in full.
Escalate your complaint
If you have a bank complaint or are unhappy with how a bank has treated you, find out how to complain to your bank and when to take your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).
The Financial Ombudsman Service is free for consumers to use and details of the ombudsman should be listed in your provider’s final letter.
Read our guide for step-by-step advice on when to take your financial complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service and how to complain about a bad financial service.