Financial Ombudsman Service – FOS
Should you feel the need to complain about the services delivered by your car insurance partner, there are several important guidelines you need to be aware of before making any rash decisions.
The primary role of The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) is to investigate complaints about (most) financial products and services provided in or from the UK, including motor insurance. If you have a legitimate problem with a financial product or service, you should always complain first to the firm you think is responsible. In most cases, the firm will be able to put things right itself.
Contact The FOS
Switchboard: Monday to Friday – 8am to 8pm Saturday – 9am to 1pm 0800 023 4 567, calls to this number are normally free for people ringing from a “fixed line” phone – but charges may apply if you call from a mobile phone. Also, 0300 123 9 123 calls to this number are charged at the same rate as 01 or 02 numbers on mobile phone tariffs These numbers may not be available from outside the UK – so please call from abroad on +44 20 7964 0500. FOS will be happy to phone you back, if you’re worried about the cost of calling them.
Post: The Financial Ombudsman Service, Exchange Tower, London E14 9SR.
The FOS service is free to consumers. The organisation is not a regulator (“watchdog”) or a trade body or a consumer champion. Their role is just to settle disputes, as an alternative to the courts. Legal representation is not necessary, and you are responsible for your own legal costs.
News by E-mail
If you would like to keep up-to-date with news from the Ombudsman Service you can register for free and receive their regular Newsletter for firms and consumer advisers. A good example of the type of information you can sign-up to receive is given below:
Insurance – keys left in cars: a continuing problem
Almost all Motor Policies include a clause that excludes cover for theft or attempted theft if the ignition keys were left in – or on – the vehicle. As this constitutes a major restriction on the scope of cover, insurers need to draw it to the attention of prospective customers, in accordance with the Association of British Insurers’ Code of Practice for General Insurance Business. If an insurer cannot demonstrate that it did this, then we are likely to uphold the complaint.
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