The majority of CPP mis-selling victims won't be given another chance to get their money back after the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has disappointingly rejected MoneySavingExpert.com's calls to reopen the redress scheme.
At the beginning of the month we urged the financial regulator to allow victims of the wide-scale CPP mis-selling scandal who'd yet to claim their cash to be allowed to do so, after the redress scheme shut in August.
Our calls followed alarming figures released by the FCA showing that only 2.37 million of the 7 million eligible to reclaim CPP applied, meaning 4.63 million missed out on a further £850 million worth of redress (see the The CPP redress scheme was a failure as £850m went unclaimed MSE News story).
The FCA has since told MoneySavingExpert.com that the scheme won't be reopened, but we'll keep pressure on the regulator in the hope that it will change its mind.
Martin Lewis, MoneySavingExpert.com creator, says: "The aim of these schemes is to give people that were mis-sold redress.
"But some of the people mis-sold to are by definition confused about these things. So a letter headed 'CPP' that looked and felt very similar to a PPI spam letter was always doomed to fail.
"I asked the FCA to reopen the redress scheme but it doesn't look like it is going to do it, which is quite depressing when we are trying to get financial justice for people.
"Unless you were out of the country or have some excuse of that ilk that enables you to write to CPP and say you unfairly missed the deadline, unfortunately, saying that you didn't know what this letter was isn't a justifiable excuse.
"There is nothing you can do, this money is lost to you unless the FCA decides to reopen the scheme."
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Redress scheme won't be reopened
The FCA says: "We take the view that the CPP Scheme achieved the objective of offering a simple claims process and way of paying compensation quickly to the largest number of consumers.
"The CPP Scheme delivered £450 million of compensation to consumers in six months, which is significant. We have not therefore asked the Scheme administrators to consider extending the Scheme bar date."
It adds: "While it is unfortunate that not all consumers submitted their claim forms before the bar date, they represent a minority of the successful claimants."
Some can still claim post-2005
There are some exceptions CPP has laid out where people may still be able to claim even though the official scheme is now closed. These include those in the situations below:
- If they were out of the country for at least six months between 31 January 2014 and 30 August.
- If they suffered from a certified medical condition, which meant it was unreasonable to expect them to respond before 30 August.
- If the scheme asked them to resubmit a claim form because it was not completed correctly (prior to 30 August) and the deadline it gave to return it falls after 30 August.
If this is you, then you may still be able to get your money back. If exceptional circumstance one or two listed above apply, you'll need to send a letter (enclosing supporting documents) to Scheme Processing Services Limited, PO Box 250, Wymondham NR18 8DG.
Information about the appropriate supporting documents to provide can be found in the FAQs section of the redress website. The letter must be received on or before 28 February 2015.
If exceptional circumstance three in the list above applies, you will have already been advised on what to do when you were sent a new claim form. These must be completed within 30 days of the date you were informed of the need to complete a new claim form.
What were the mis-sold policies?
There were two policies that were mis-sold: card and ID fraud protection. The card protection product allowed customers to call one number to have all lost and stolen cards stopped. Crucially, if your card was lost and stolen it would cancel it and cover you for fraud.
The ID fraud protection product promised to give reports about your identity, despite the fact you've a statutory right to a credit report for £2, and cover you for the risk and liability of having your identity stolen.
Card protection cost customers about £30 a year, while identity protection set them back about £80 a year. Victims are entitled to their money back on any policy bought since 14 January 2005, plus 8% interest on top.
How was CPP mis-sold?
Commonly, when customers got a credit or debit card, there was an 'activation' sticker with a number to call. This was a ruse to sell the insurance. People thought they were talking to their bank to set up a card, but it was actually CPP.
They were then told they needed £100,000 fraud protection cover; yet banks must cover fraud anyway, unless they can prove the customer was grossly negligent. So these key elements of the policy were virtually worthless.
But it doesn't stop there. Some people were also told they couldn't cancel, or the risk of ID fraud was overstated. CPP also hiked prices without telling people, and it auto-renewed policies with no opportunity to cancel.
The FCA found widespread mis-selling provided by CPP and sold by several banks, credit card firms and directly by CPP. It fined CPP £10.5 million for mis-selling in March 2012.
Victims can still claim pre-2005
The CPP redress scheme was only for customers who were mis-sold policies after 14 January 2005, however those who were mis-sold before may still be able to claim.
Those who switched bank since being mis-sold will need to complain to the bank that originally mis-sold the products and have the paperwork to hand from that bank. Full information on how to complain, including template letters, is in the CPP guide.