“After successfully claiming back thousands of pounds I can guide you through the PPI process”

Posted: 3rd February 2017

A few years back when my spouse and I were contemplating moving to a bigger house we turned to a bank for a mortgage loan. The bank official mentioned about an insurance but did not divulge much information about it. Years later, I met a friend who had just reclaimed thousands of pounds in PPI compensation and as the conversation progressed I realised I too might have been a victim of the mis-selling scandal.

My immediate response like most of us was to research on the internet. The amount of information available on the subject online was overwhelming. After successfully claiming back thousands of pounds myself I am now in a position to guide you through the entire process.

What is PPI?

PPI stands for payment protection insurance. As the name suggests, this insurance covered borrowers who were unable to repay their loans due to a change in income caused by unemployment, injuries, illness or death. It was sold alongside loans of many types such as credit cards, store cards, cash loans, mortgages etc.

PPI has been in the news for a long time and not for the right reasons. The statistics are staggering, with millions of people being potentially affected by this scandal and banks setting aside billions of pounds for compensation. If you have borrowed money from financial institutions in the last decade, then chances are high that you too could have been mis-sold a PPI policy just like I was. I remember feeling anger and confusion when I realised that I was mis-sold PPI.

Why was PPI mis-sold by banks?

PPI was meant to be a policy purchased at the sole discretion of the consumer. But unlike most of the insurances which offered cover at lower costs, PPI was overly expensive and hence more profitable for a bank. The premium often increased the loan amount by 20% with some going over 50%.

After that, because it was so profitable for banks, bank employees were pushed to sell more and more PPI policies to customers. Incentives were given to those who sold the most policies. Many bank employees testified as being under immense pressure to deliver and those who failed to sell the policy were put on performance review. This resulted in employees resorting to hard selling tactics and often using unfair means to make a sale. Many exploited the fear of their customers by making them think of the consequences of not being able to repay their loans.

How can someone spot mis-sold PPI?

If you are expecting to receive a confession letter from the bank, then you are going to be disappointed as I found out to my annoyance. Unless you hire a claims company, you will have to do a lot of investigation and gather enough evidence to convince the bank that you were indeed mis-sold the policy. My research revealed three ways how this insurance was mis-sold;

  • The PPI came with terms and conditions or a set of requirements that had to be fulfilled so that a borrower could claim for compensation. For example, the insurance does not cover individuals that were unemployed, self employed, retired or suffering from an illness at the time of purchasing the policy. So if you fell into any of these categories and had a PPI policy then it should not have been sold to you in the first place.
  • PPI was sold to one of my friends without his knowledge. It was only when he checked his bank statements he realised that he was making payments for a PPI policy the entire time.
  • I have also heard of occasions where a salesperson deceived the borrowers into buying this insurance by providing them false information. They were told that this policy is compulsory or that buying it will increase their chances of being granted the loan.

How could someone claim?

If you believe there is a chance that you have been mis-sold PPI, then there are two things you can do to make a claim. You can either file for a claim yourself or hire the services of a claim management company. While both have their own benefits the claimant must make a well-informed decision. When I tried to make a PPI claim myself I found that the entire process was tedious and time consuming. Banks are not in any hurry to pay up the compensation amount and therefore try to stall as much as possible hoping that a claimant might lose hope or just get bored by the process and give up. It’s here that I found that hiring a claim management company can save all the troubles of the lengthy paperwork and follow ups required to make a successful claim.

Also, When I first applied for a PPI claim the refund amount the bank was willing to offer was much lower even according to my estimates. Then I read a report which stated that as many as 2.5 million PPI claims were undervalued and had to be put up for re-investigation. It was then that I decided to hire a claims company to assist me in determining the actual amount I was owed and to file a claim on my behalf.

What is a PPI claims company?

A claims management company handles the entire process of filing a claim on behalf of its client. A claims company that specialises in PPI claims can be referred to as a PPI claims company. iSmart have operated in the PPI claims industry for over 10 years. Because of their standing in the industry they are only required to submit a name, date of birth and address. Once the banks have this information they’re able to access their database and determine if any PPI was added onto any finance that customer may have taken out. They don’t need account numbers which is a major benefit if you no longer have your paperwork and the check is COMPELTELY FREE.

Who was the biggest mis-seller of PPI?

Lloyds bank were responsible for the largest number of mis-sold PPI policies. According to reports, since 2001 as many as 34 million PPI policies could have been mis-sold. These policies have been estimated at £50bn. Lloyds banking group is responsible for selling approximately 40% of the policies which accounts for £20 bn.

What is the Financial Ombudsman?

The Financial Ombudsman is a body set up by the government. It is responsible for solving disputes between financial organisations and consumers. The organisations within the purview of the FOS are insurance companies, investment firms, banks, finance companies, money transfer operators and financial advisers. The Financial Ombudsman intervenes only after the consumer has unsuccessfully tried to resolve the dispute with the concerned financial organisation.

What does a PPI claims company do?

Many people are reluctant to file a claim through a claims company and I believe a major reason for that is a lack of awareness about what a claims company does.

A PPI claims company works on behalf of the customer not the bank and firstly determines if PPI has been mis-sold. For those who have borrowed loans on multiple occasions, the number of policies is taken into consideration. They ensure that they have all the information they may possibly require in the process of making the claim.

A PPI request is then raised with the lender and they are given 40 days to return with all relevant information they have on their client. If the banks respond by saying ‘No PPI found’ then it is possible that the PPI policy has been cancelled within a short duration of the purchase. In such cases it is certain that the customer has not made any payments for PPI and hence is not entitled to any compensation. If the claims company does not receive a response from the bank, then the issue is raised with the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).      

How can I make a claim myself?

If you are certain that you have valid grounds to make a claim, you are probably wondering about what is involved in the actual process of making a claim!

If you intend to do it yourself then you should follow the steps given below:

  • Search for all the documents which show that you have made payments for the policy. Make several copies of those documents.
  • Various templates of a complaint letter are available with the banks and on websites. Using those templates you can write a complaint letter to the financial institutions which granted you the loan.
  • Determine the amount of refund that you are entitled to claim. The refund amount should include all PPI payments made by you along with a compensation set at 8% of the refund amount.
  • If you do not get a response from the bank or find their offer to be unfair then you should escalate the matter to the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Why is it beneficial to claim using a PPI claims company?

There is a lot of information available on the internet which will make you believe that filing a claim yourself is more beneficial and that can be true but not always. The paperwork required by the banks left me tired and perplexed. It is worth noting that few cases can be more complex than the rest as calculations of the refund amount can be quite tricky. It involves many variables such as the duration for which the loan was held, premium payments made and the statutory compensation. There have been instances of banks undervaluing the refund amount thus adding to the hassles of the claimant.

Another advantage of a PPI claims company is that most have adopted a ‘No-Win-No-Fee’ strategy. If the client is not awarded with compensation, then they are not obligated to pay fees to the claims company. If you are extremely busy then a claims company can save you a lot of time.

The financial Ombudsman cannot intervene in cases which are prior to 2005. In such matters the client will be required to present his case before a judicial court. This process can be handled properly by a professional claim company.

In my opinion the fees charged by the claims company is worth paying especially in my case as it saved me a lot of time and effort and most importantly got me the compensation amount I deserved. I would highly recommend iSmart.

Lloyds Banking Group Continues to Lose faith of Clients

Posted: 2nd February 2017

Founded in 1769 Lloyds Bank is one of the most predominant banks across the UK, named as one of the ‘big four clearing banks’. Considered to be a highly reputable company, Lloyds is the most extensive retail bank across Britain, with numerous banks based across every part of the UK.    

It is commonly known that Lloyds Bank was one of the main culprits involved in the PPI scandal. This quickly caused many clients to lose faith in the bank, and since this scandal Lloyds bank has failed to recover the situation in an appropriate manner. Causing more problems for clients and continuing to breach fundamental precedents.  

PPI was wrongfully added onto clients’ payments for bank loans, credit cards, store cards and mortgages. PPI was mis-sold to many customers via wrongful tactics, such as telling the customer that the loan would only be approved if PPI was added, or that PPI being added would make the loan more likely to be accepted. In some cases, PPI was added on to customers’ payments without them even knowing it.  

Having recently been analysed by ‘Watchdog’, it has been said that Lloyds have committed ‘serious’ breaches over PPI policies, being the lender which mis-sold most PPI policies in the UK.  

It has been found by the Competition and Markets Authority that Lloyds have failed to contact hundreds of customers regarding their annual statements over the last five years, a requirement for banks. This particular breach could be an attempt to avoid highlighting to customers that they had PPI mischarges therefore preventing customers from claiming back the money which is owed to them. In some cases, Lloyds have delivered incorrect information to their clients, and in other cases had overcharged customers.  

It has recently been considered by the Financial Conduct Authority that they should impose a two-year limit on PPI claims, with a deadline of mid 2019 for all claims. During this consideration, the continuous and numerous breaches of rules and regulations carried out by Lloyds Bank were discovered, and therefore the deadline is still being decided on, and the decision is due to be made in the first quarter of this year.  

With a deadline for PPI claims possibly on the horizon, it is highly advisable to research your finances, ensure that you know exactly where your money is going, and look into the possibility that PPI could have been added onto your bills without your knowledge or approval. It could even be the case that you have missed out on annual statements, or been given incorrect information 

If you are unsure if you qualify for a refund for mis-sold PPI, it is important to find out if you are owed any money before the deadline is applied. You can start this process by conducting a free PPI check. You don’t need any account details just complete the free check online form and you will receive the relevant forms to sign free by post, simply provide your name, date of birth and the address of where you lived at the time of the loan and return the forms and you could receive a large repayment. 

All You Need to Know About the Claims Deadline

Posted: 23rd January 2017 & filed under PPI

PPI Claims Deadline: Make a Claim Before It’s Too Late

Posted: 9th January 2017 & filed under PPI

Payment protection insurance is the UK’s biggest financial scandal with over £40bn put aside to repay customers who were mis-sold policies. However, the Financial Conduct Authority may approve a proposed summer 2019 deadline for all PPI claims – despite major opposition from consumer groups. Payback Time, a campaign group, believes the deadline could save the banks £20bn that they would have otherwise used to pay back mis-sold customers.

Once the deadline is officially announced, consumers can expect longer queues and troubling consumer service. The customer claims centres will struggle to cope with increasing demand as we near the deadline and this is likely to include upscaling a claim to the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Recent figures show that just over 50% of claims that are made without the help of a company like ourselves are rejected, either because the claimant hasn’t got the access to the required information or because they haven’t got the experience of dealing with these kinds of processes.

Because of our standing in the industry we have brokered a deal with the major banks and lenders, which means that we’re not required to submit anything more than a name, date of birth and address. Once the banks have this information they’re able to assess all of their databases and determine if any PPI was added onto any finance you may have taken out.

This kind of agreement is a relatively new one and is only available to select companies.

To begin a free check with PPI.co.uk follow these simple steps:

Step 1: Use our online FREE CHECK form to enter your current contact details and select the relevant lenders that you have previously borrowed money from. We can then send you the necessary pre-filled forms.

Step 2: You will need to sign the letter of authority for each lender and return these to us as soon as possible.

Step 3: We will approach your previous lenders to identify if you have a/multiple PPI refund/s due, we will update you with the results. If you do have a refund due it is up to you whether you complete the claim with us or do this alone, there is no obligation.

All refunds from a bank should contain your PPI compensation of 10% and the APR additions you have made up in the years you have paid for PPI policies. If you believe you were mis-sold PPI then it’s essential you act quickly.

PPI.co.uk has been helping customers retrieve what has been rightfully owed to them for a long time now and during this period we’ve been able to achieve a reputation of helpful, knowledgeable service.

PPI cases are rarely ever the same, and some, particularly the older policies, can be very difficult to achieve results on. However, it’s these difficult cases that have helped us build our reputation because we’re able to draw from our experience for other similar cases and achieve excellent results for our customers.

New Proposals Could Mean Banks Pocket £23bn

Posted: 21st December 2016 & filed under PPI

It has been revealed that banks stand to pocket up to £23bn in unpaid payment protection insurance (PPI) compensation when brand new deadlines come into play.

Under new plans, the government and regulators intend to force the banks to invest £42m into an advertising campaign to alert consumers of the upcoming deadline. This is a comparatively small sum if the banks manage to retrieve the unpaid redress.

The industry as a whole has had difficulties estimating the total cost of their misconduct. Recent research shows that Lloyds has been forced to increase its provisions for PPI 10 times between 2011 and the third quarter of 2014.

In August, the Financial Conduct Authority announced it was setting a deadline for complaints in June 2019, not the initial spring 2018 that was previously proposed.

The combined proposals could result in billions of pounds added to banks' balance sheets.

A survey by YouGov found that almost half of those surveyed thought the government wasn’t doing enough to improve the way the banks treat consumers, and 57% of people felt the banks need to do more to alert people to the fact that there is still around two thirds of the PPI redress yet to be paid out.

If you believe you were mis-sold PPI, there may not be time to waste, start a free PPI check now.

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