If you were sold a product by your bank or another financial institution that was not suitable for your particular situation and needs, you may be able to receive compensation by filing a complaint. If your bank’s response leaves you less the ecstatic, your complaint may be investigated by the Financial Ombudsman Service, potentially providing you with the compensation you deserve.

What Constitutes Financial Mis-Selling?

Mis-selling simply means that your bank gave you unsuitable advice, you were not provided with the proper information, the risks involved with the product were not explained to you, or you ultimately were sold a product that wasn’t suitable for you. Banks have a financial responsibility to only recommend products that are suitable for your specific needs and explain the product in detail, including the risks involved. If a bank fails to do this, you may be able to file a complaint and receive compensation.

Key Considerations

Whether you lost money or not has nothing to with a financial mis-selling complaint. Even if you did not lose any money, you can still file a mis-selling complaint if the product is not right for you or there are more risks involved than you wanted. You cannot file a complaint and expect it to be heard simply because the investment product performed poorly. However, you can file a complaint if the risks were not disclosed to you.

Examples of Payment Protection Insurance Mis-Selling:

• You were sold a PPI when you were retired or unemployed.
• You were pressured into buying a PPI or told that you must take it out.
• The terms and conditions were not fully explained.
• The rules regarding pre-existing medical conditions were not disclosed.
• You were not told that you were able to purchase PPI from another bank or company.
• The exclusions to the policy were not disclosed.
• You were not asked if you had other insurance that could serve as payment protection.

Examples of Mortgage Mis-Selling:

• You were advised to overstate your income in order to increase your purchasing power or told to self-certify.
• The end date of your mortgage is after the date of your retirement.
• You were advised to choose a new lender and the penalties and fees involved with this were not disclosed.
• You incurred fees for leaving your fixed rate mortgage early after being advised to re-mortgage for a better deal.
• The commission given to the advisor from the lender was not disclosed.

Examples of Investment Mis-Selling:

• The risks involved were not disclosed.
• You were not informed of how your money was to be invested.
• The product had a higher risk profile than what you had discussed with the advisor or it did not suit your needs.


If you want to file a complaint with the Financial Ombudsman Service, you only have six years from the date you were mis-sold the product, or three years from the date you realised that something was amiss. However, the Pensions Ombudsman has a time limit of three years from the date of the mis-selling event or three years after recognising the event complained of. More information regarding the complaint stipulations can be found on the Financial Ombudsman website.

Before taking your complaint to the ombudsman services, you must first complain to your bank or provider. To do this, you need to first gather all of the information and proof that you need. Then, contact the person stated in the document outlining the firm’s internal complaints process. If you do not receive a response within eight weeks, or if you are unhappy with their response, you have six weeks to file your complaint with the Financial Ombudsman Service. If the firm no longer exists, the Financial Services Compensation Scheme may still be able to provide you with compensation.

Although more and more firms are beginning to approve compensation for a growing number of complaints in an attempt to put the mis-selling scandal behind them, a large number of complaints are still being denied compensation. If you are not satisfied with their response to your complaint, you can address the matter by bringing your claim to the Financial Ombudsman Service. If you have a pensions-related complaint, you can bring it to the attention of the Pension Ombudsman, but it might be worthwhile contacting the Pensions Advisory Service beforehand.

An ombudsman service is an independent service that will investigate your complaint at no cost. However, you must follow the official complaints procedure of your firm and await their response before you can utilise the services of an ombudsman.

Typically, you would go to the ombudsman if you have not received a decision from your firm within eight weeks, but if the firm is helpful and is keeping you informed throughout the process, you may want to hold off on going to the ombudsman a little longer. Remember, if your complaint relates to a matter that happened some years ago, it may take time to pull the relevant files and investigate the matter.

In most cases, the decision of the ombudsman is final, but if you are unhappy with their decision as well, you may be able to pursue the matter through the courts as a last resort. Unfortunately, this is an expensive option, so you should consider the situation carefully before doing so

Financial Mis-selling : News

Mis-Sold Investments in the Millions for British Households

New research has indicated that Millions of British Households have been Mis-Sold Investments and are now sitting with unsuitable investment products.

The investment research found that 1 in 5 actually had all the different investment products explained to them, leaving 90% of people only advised on a singular invetment product. 22% of people said they were explained the full Pro’s and Con’s to the particular investment and only 19% said the investment advisor was upfront about how he made his monies

Read More

Preparing Businesses for an Interest Rate Swap Claim

The interest rate swap mis-selling fiasco has garnered a lot of attention during the past year. Over 12 months after the first cases went up for review, the claimants are just now receiving the compensation they deserve. Although it may seem like businesses around the country are now experiencing financial windfalls, there is much work that needs to be done before anyone can expect to receive compensation from their interest rate swap mis-selling claims. It has become quite clear that the process is much more involved than a PP mark-II.

Read More

FCA fines Axa £1.8m for failing in Investment Advice to customers

The Financial Conduct Authority ( FCA ) has fined Axa wealth, part of the AXA group, £ 1.8m for failing to give suitable investment advice to customers.

The investment failings put a significant number of customers at risk for buying unsuitable investment products. AXA has agreed to contact all customers who may be affected by its investment advice failings and a third party will oversee the review. Any customer who suffered a loss over the poor financial investment advice will be compensated and they will be able to withdraw from the investment.

Read More

Bankers should be charged, says 68% of Midlands residents

A recent survey of East Midlands residents revealed that 7 out of 10 ( 68% ) believe that Bankers should face criminal charges over fraudulenty selling Payment Protection Insurance or PPI.

The survey also goes on to say that 60% of Midlands residents would like to see the Government actually track down people who were mis-sold PPI and start the compensation prceedure before a personal complaint has to be made. 51% also suggested that living relatives of deceased victims of PPI mis-sellling should recieve the money made by the Banks and 25% agreed that in cases where releatives cannot be determined, the compensation should be given to charity.

Read More

Tim Capper reports on Financial Mis-Selling for Maple Leaf Financial. Our aim is to ensure you get honest advice and proper guidance to ensure a suitable recommendation can be made to pursue a financial claim


The following two tabs change content below.

Tim Capper

Bringing you financial news and information in plain english for Maple Leaf Financial. My aim is to help readers understand these often complex financial instruments.