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Reclaim PPI for Free

Claim £1,000s for mis-selling with time-bar looming

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Sam D and | Edited by Martin

Updated February 2017

clock minutes to midnight

The deadline to claim payment protection insurance (PPI) is about to be set. We've already had six million template letters downloaded and now to help we've launched an easy and free PPI reclaiming tool to help you get your money back without paying anybody a penny to do so.

Anyone who's ever had a loan, credit or store card, catalogue account, overdraft or car finance needs to urgently check NOW if they were flogged worthless PPI. And if this deadline – when introduced – seems a long way away, the queue will build up – so the earlier you do this, the quicker you'll get dealt with and paid.

This is the latest incarnation of our PPI guide. Please let us know how you found it, and if the information worked for you in this article's forum discussion.

case study of a reclaim

PPI reclaiming: The 9 need-to-knows

PPI was an insurance policy sold (or forced upon you) when you got a loan, credit or store card, catalogue account, overdraft or car finance

PPI stands for 'Payment Protection Insurance'. It's designed to cover your loan or credit card repayments for a year in the event of an accident, sickness or, in some cases, unemployment.

In itself, it isn't a bad product. But it's been widely mis-sold, leaving many paying thousands for potentially worthless cover – and you could even have it without knowing (see the Mis-selling Checklist). Sales staff were hugely incentivised to sell PPI whenever possible – and much of the insurance went on huge commissions.

Many were under so much pressure, they strayed far from the truth. The sellers were often trusted financial institutions, so sadly, many were left with mis-sold PPI. The mis-selling's scale has meant that many have no idea how much they're owed – and are often staggered by the sums they get back.

A huge thank you for encouraging us to claim. We used your guide and received £22,000 for the PPI from our bank! - Jeff

Quick questions

When did PPI mis-selling start?

Why was PPI mis-sold?

Why is reclaiming possible?

newspaper headlines

A deadline is set to be put in place, so you need to act NOW

Regulator the Financial Conduct Authority confirmed in August that it is set to introduce a time-bar – likely June 2019 – which it believes will prompt consumers into action. Technically, it's still at consultation stage yet in effect it's a fait accompli.

We've campaigned against this deadline but we certainly think it's going to happen and happen quick – and it also means there's likely to be an enormous queue of people who stampede to do it because of the deadline. So even though the cut-off date is expected to be two years away, you need to act NOW.

I won't beat around the bush – this is a huge call to arms. You've heard all this before and you might think it's all over – it's not. Think this doesn't apply to you? Don't. We've heard from thousands of people who have reclaimed who thought it wasn't them – take five minutes to check.

And if you've never tried before and don't think this affects you, you're possibly wrong. One of the ways PPI was mis-sold was by being added without you being told. Take this case study from John for inspiration...

I took your advice and have claimed PPI from all the companies we had loans with. The result has been overwhelming: approximately £19,000 back... thank you. - John

Quick questions

How much might I get back?

Will reclaiming PPI hit my credit rating?

Can I make more than one PPI complaint?

I've already reclaimed bank charges, can I still reclaim PPI?

Will I have to pay tax on any claim refund?

If you don't know if you had PPI, who your lender was, are missing info or lack paperwork, don't worry – it's easy to find out

man with question markLots of people worry about reclaiming PPI because they don't have full details or can't remember, but don't let this put you off. Here's what you need to do...

Don't know if you even took out PPI? Check your credit files

Don't feel silly if you don't know – this is the number one question we get, full stop. First, you can try finding out by going back through all your old loan and mortgage statements and checking for any mention of an insurance fee or product to cover your payments if you lost your job through accident, sickness or unemployment.

Look for something that may be called 'payment cover', 'protection plan', 'ASU', 'loan protection', 'retail payment protection', 'loan care' or similar.

If you don't have those documents or simply cannot remember which lenders you've borrowed from in the past, don't worry – you can check your credit report. It lists any loans, mortgages or other debts that were live within the last six years, even if they're now closed.

You've a right to see credit files for £2, but in general you can see them for free from Equifax, Experian and Callcredit. See our Check your credit report guide for full info. Don't think it's unlikely – take the following success as a brilliant example:

We honestly believed we had never had PPI and ignored all your suggestions to check. Until... we saw you say that even if we didn't think we had, we should phone to check. Now it turns out we had three policies over the past 20 years and have recently had almost £5,000 back. Thank you, thank you, thank you! - K.H

Think you had PPI and know the lender but don't have the paperwork? Contact 'em for details

If you've thrown away your paperwork, don't panic: there's a way to get hold of it. If you don't have a copy of your agreement or T&Cs you can contact your lender to ask for a copy (make sure the T&Cs date back to the time of your agreement, as terms will change over time).

What to ask depends on whether your account is still open or is closed. Here are template letters to send off to ask your bank.

Is your account still open? Here, lenders can ask for £1 to provide a copy of your agreement but not all do so. You could include a £1 cheque (don't send cash, though) to speed it up a little.

Is your account now closed? You can ask for a full breakdown of your whole account, specifically including the insurance. If it takes longer than 40 days, report it to the Information Commissioner. This breakdown can cost £10 so you could include a £10 cheque (not cash).

OPEN account CLOSED account

Broken piggy bank with cash spilling out

Got your old bank paperwork but not sure if you had PPI? Call 'em to ask

The easiest way to check is to contact your lender. Most will be able to tell you whether you've had PPI, either now or at some point in the past. For example, Nationwide has an enquiry form you can complete online to find out.

See contact details for the main banks

If this doesn't work, what's needed is likely to depend on how old your policy is. Some lenders only need a name and address (remember to let it know if yours has changed), others may need more details.

It may be easier if you have the original agreement and terms. Under the Data Protection Act, if your account's still open, you've a legal right to get your agreement from the lender for £1.

If your account's closed and the lender can't find your PPI policy terms, it'll be harder to process your complaint. Contact your provider with as much detail as you can, or ask for a full breakdown of your account. It can cost £10 to get this.

Quick questions

I've asked but my bank says I didn't have PPI. Is there another way to check?

My bank conversations were verbal/I've no other evidence, help!

There's NO time limit on how far back you can go to make a PPI claim; the only problem may be the paperwork

You can complain about a product sold at any time though here are some guidelines which may help. It's easier if your insurance was active in the last six years, but don't let this put you off.

  • Insurance started in the last six years: There's no issue here at all as you can request information from the lenders going back six years. Even if the loan's now paid off, you can start a reclaim.

  • Older insurance that's still active, or ended within the last six years: You can start a reclaim. The six-year rule applies to active insurance, so a policy taken out 12 years ago but paid off five years ago was still active within the key six-year period.

  • If your policy ended over six years ago: The 'statute of limitations' means banks don't need to keep records that are over six years old. However, there is no official cut-off time so if you've still got the paperwork – while your chances of success are a little lower with older loans – many still do successfully reclaim.

We've had many successes going back to the early 1990s:

I wrote to my bank about several loans I'd had with them since 1998. I got a letter back offering me just under £13,000 compensation for mis-sold PPI, very quick turnaround as well, money was in my account in less than a week from sending the agreement back! - C.S

Just received £705 in an answer for a PPI claim from February 1990... that's 26 years ago! I was checking paperwork for my wife when I found the original loan agreement from 1990. The moral of the story? Never throw away old bank statements. - Mr A.W

Quick questions

Can I reclaim if I'm still paying off the loan?

Can I reclaim if the loan's repaid and I'm no longer a customer?

Tried to reclaim PPI before and got rejected? If you believe you were mis-sold, try AGAIN

The PPI story is always changing and we hear new stories of bad practice all the time – many banks have been fined for fobbing customers off and shoddy handling of their complaints.

If you're at all concerned that your past complaint wasn't dealt with fairly you have the right to carry on to the independent Ombudsman, or ask your lender to look again at your case. The fact you were rejected in the past does NOT mean you weren't mis-sold.

If you received the bank's final response within the last six months, take your case straight to the Ombudsman. Follow the steps below to carry on.

If it's been more than six months since your complaint was rejected and you didn't go to the Ombudsman, you may find it might not be as easy to restart your reclaim. This is because of rules laid down by the City regulator which say the Ombudsman does not have to consider a complaint if more than six months have passed since a 'final response' letter has been sent.

But even if six months are up, you could still claim again.

If your letter doesn't spell out that you've six months to go to the Ombudsman – perhaps because the provider is prepared to look at all complaints at any time, or it's an administrative oversight by the lender – you may be OK, so contact the Ombudsman immediately.

credit union

If six months have passed and you've had a final response letter, you could still be able to claim again. For example, a severe illness may have prevented you from being able to write to the Ombudsman in time.

Or say you had an original claim rejected on the grounds the PPI provider could find no evidence you ever had a policy.

If you then discover an original document during a clear-out which shows you DID have it, your case will usually be considered again. Don't worry if the bank won't play ball - if the bank says you can’t reopen it, you can then go to the Ombudsman to appeal this decision.

This should then allow you to go back again to the bank and say ‘look at my case’ - and if it rejects you once more, you can then appeal to the Ombudsman.

As a rule, a PPI provider prepared to look again at any complaint after the six-month 'final response' rule will tend to do so, as above, on a case-by-case basis. However, if you do think you have a legitimate case, then it's a simple job to do – just use the Resolver tool below or the MSE template letters to resubmit your complaint to your bank.

Remember to put in details of your last complaint, including any reference numbers if you have them. Explain that you're unhappy with the bank's decision, and ask it to look again at your case. And if it decides against you, you can then go to the Ombudsman.

One point in your favour is that, the longer ago you were rejected, then the more likely it is that the bank decision was wrong. This is because many firms have been fined for mishandling complaints and so they will be more likely to accept your mis-selling case.

Quick questions

I was turned down by the Ombudsman a few years ago; can I try again?

If I've already claimed on my PPI, can I still make a mis-selling complaint?

You can still reclaim if your lender/broker has been taken over or gone bust

Don't be put off if this is the case. Original lender taken over? When buying another company, new owners are usually liable for its debts and for paying customers.

Sometimes the liability stays with the old provider, but complain to the new firm and it'll let you know if that's the case. As an example, Egg's credit cards have now been taken over by Barclaycard, so Barclaycard's liable for Egg's past PPI mis-selling.

If your lender's gone bust and you were mis-sold, you'll need to contact the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (the lender must have been FSA/FCA-regulated for you to do this). This is the official body which insures the liabilities of finance companies are met. See Safe Savings for more info – the process is very similar.

Following your tips I claimed PPI against an old protection policy pushed by a now defunct provider – a 'mean to' job which took me months to get around to. About three hours' work resulted in a £4,000 return which included refund of premiums plus interest. Enough to say yes to a family wedding invitation to Florida. - Mr C.G

Quick questions

My financial adviser/broker sold me another lender's PPI. Who do I contact?

My lender was based in Jersey. Can I reclaim?

My debt's been passed to a collection agency. Who do I contact to reclaim?

I've had a debt management plan / IVA / been bankrupt, can I reclaim?

You CAN reclaim PPI for a deceased relative or if you live abroad

Many families only discover a parent or family member had taken out PPI when they die, during the onerous task of sorting through paperwork and their affairs – but their death doesn't mean the end of the compensation they're owed.

Any monies owed become part of their estate, so the person who inherits is entitled to reclaim (let the executor know too). If there's no will this follows the rules of intestacy; see Yet it's worth noting there may be problems proving what happened at the time of the sale if only the policyholder was present.

And if you live overseas, the fact you now live abroad is neither here nor there – you can reclaim. See the Mis-selling Checklist to find out if you were mis-sold.

I found several old loan statements showing PPI in my late husband's paperwork. The loan company no longer exists so I had to google the parent company for an address. Then, six weeks later, the bank behind it wrote back saying they would be paying me £33,000 as PPI repayment accrued interest! Thank you a million times. - Mrs M. Cork

Quick questions

I had a joint loan with my partner but we're now divorced, does this affect my case?

I've still got the PPI. Will they cancel it if I reclaim?

I wasn't stupid enough to get PPI, what do I get back?

You do NOT need to pay a company to reclaim PPI for you

Boxer uppercut

How loudly can I say this? You do NOT need to pay, no way, absolutely not, never! (Well almost never, which I'll come to very shortly.)

Companies known as claims handlers do very little that we don't already do for you below in our new reclaiming tool. They usually take about 25% of the proceeds, plus VAT, yet it's easy to do yourself. Many people give away £1,000s unnecessarily when they could keep all the reclaimed cash themselves.

Just got a PPI payout this week – £1,800 going back over 10 years – and I did it all on my own without having to pay someone else. It was so easy. - Ms L.G

If you're thinking it'll simply be easier to use a claims company, don't: you're still going to have to provide them with the same information you put in the form here. However, in certain circumstances – see below – you should go ahead and do it.

Quick questions

What are the circumstances when it'll be worth using a claims company?

I get unwanted cold calls and texts from PPI companies, how can I make them stop?

A company's kept my initial fee after I pulled out, help!

I'm using a claims handler but I'm not happy, what can I do?

The claims company says I've a better chance if I use it. Is this true?

How do I know if a claims handler's any good?

Even if you weren't mis-sold PPI, a court case called Plevin means you're now likely due a chunk back because you were overcharged

In 2014, a court ruling held that customer Susan Plevin was treated unfairly because she wasn't told about the large amount of commission (71.8%) taken from her PPI payment. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) says firms should generally consider a complaint on the grounds of an unfair relationship between lender and borrower if commission was above 50%.

This effectively means that if the cost of PPI was made up of more than 50% commission and you weren't told this, you should get the difference back. As typical commission was 67% most people are likely owed.

At the moment, the regulator is still consulting on how to deal with the implications of this, and how future claims need to be made. We've been lobbying hard on this, and it's not sorted yet; when we get there, we'll give you all the information to help you get what's owed to you.

Quick questions

Who is affected by the Plevin case?

Will the bank get in touch with me, or do I have to make the first contact?

How much am I likely to get back?

The Mis-selling Checklist: How do YOU know if it was mis-sold?

Don't start this thinking 'Do I have evidence?' Instead, ask yourself 'Did this happen to me?' and if it did, the likelihood is it happened to other people.

The way providers decide, based on the balance of evidence they've got, is 'Was this likely to be correct?' All you need do is answer the question about whether it happened to you, NOT 'Can I prove it happened to me?'

All policies will have exclusions, and you should've been told about them. As most policies are bought alongside a financial product rather than on their own, the key issue is:

...what was said at the point you were sold the product.

Here are the key mis-selling categories in our checklist. If you fit one or more of these, you probably have a case:

A. Were you told it was compulsory?

blue questions mark

It's a common complaint that consumers are told they must buy a policy from the same provider as the loan to be accepted for the product. This is mis-selling.

If this applies to you, read the full 'I was told to have it' briefing

B. Didn't realise you had cover?

green question mark

Too many people have told us of their surprise and shock to discover they have been paying PPI premiums for years – and are stumped as to why. Yet there are many ways it was mis-sold to you without your knowledge...

If this applies to you, read the full 'I had no idea I had it' briefing

C. Were you told or sold the wrong thing?

pink question mark

This covers anything from the fact you were already covered through work or your partner, the policy was not what you agreed to, the insurance term was shorter than your loan and you didn't realise, or if you thought it was a joint policy but in fact it was only in one person's name.

If this applies to you, read our full general mis-selling briefing

D. Self-employed, unemployed or retired?

ocean question mark

If you were unemployed or retired when you were sold the policy, check if it included unemployment cover. If it did, the unemployment cover's worthless – this should've been pointed out.

If you were self-employed at the time, check whether you were eligible for a payout if your business went bust (usually not) – if not, and it wasn't pointed out, you may have a case.

If this applies to you, read our full mis-sold unemployment cover briefing

E. Had any medical problems in the past?

red question mark

Most policies exclude existing medical conditions, meaning you're unlikely to be covered for any medical problems you've had in the past. You should've been asked about this, and informed the policy could be affected.

If this applies to you, read our full pre-existing medical conditions briefing

F. Has your provider already been fined?

blue questions mark

The regulator has said it wants to see better practice. Many major providers, including Lloyds, LV and Capital One, have been fined for "not treating customers fairly". If yours has, it's very likely you've a case.

If this applies to you, read our full list of fined providers

Free PPI reclaiming tool

Warning! While every effort's been made to ensure this article's accuracy, it doesn't constitute legal advice and you act on it at your own risk.

Passengers should claim compensationOK, if you're here, we reckon you're ready to make a claim! However, we're making two big assumptions. In particular, that:

  • You know all about your PPI, who the lender was, what policy you had and when – if not, see need-to-knows 3 and 4 above.

  • You know what the reason is for the mis-selling – if not, see the Mis-selling Checklist above.

But if you've got all the information above – or as much of it as you can – then you're ready to go...

Free PPI reclaiming tool from MoneySavingExpert

Our free online tool helps draft a letter (which you can alter before sending), sends it, tells you when you've a response, keeps track of your complaint and escalates it all the way up to the Ombudsman if necessary.

We do this using the complaints firm Resolver, which provides the technology, but the underlying template letters and logic behind it are ours. We're working with Resolver on many projects to combine our expertise on how to complain with its cutting-edge technology.

Choose the bank or PPI provider you were mis-sold by in the dropdown below:

All you need is your account number, the reason you think you were mis-sold (see The mis-selling checklist above) and the date you took out the product, plus copies of any of your statements or other relevant documents (Resolver lets you attach these before sending off the complaint).

  • What if the bank / PPI provider says no? If your complaint's rejected or you don't hear back, after eight weeks Resolver will prompt you to escalate it to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
  • Can't find your bank? We've covered the big accounts, but if you can't find yours, Resolver says accounts can be added to the tool if you alert it via its website or by emailing If you don't want to wait, you'll need to complain directly using our template letters.
  • Unhappy with Resolver? We don't have a lot of feedback on Resolver so far. Read past feedback and leave your own on our Resolver forum thread. For more on how we work with Resolver see our full Resolver guide.

Alternatively, use our free template letters

We've put all our information into Resolver and believe that's the easiest and best way to do it. However, if for some reason you decide you don't want to use the tool, we have template letters that you can either use or use as guidance to call the firm and ask for a refund.

In the old days this often meant following a protracted dance – thankfully, it's much easier now. It's sometimes possible to deal with your whole complaint by phone. Use the information in the templates to guide your conversation.

How to do it: Fill in the templates

Help as your case progresses

Whether you apply using our new free tool or the templates, it's crucial that you keep a close eye on the progress of your complaint. These are the key stages you must keep track of, and take action once you reach each one.

Received an offer from your bank? Make sure it's fair

At this stage you could hear back from your bank with an offer to refund your PPI premiums. Some that offer letters may also include a leaflet from MSE and Which? to help you check your PPI offer is fair, and know your rights if you feel it isn't.

Here's a copy of the leaflet – let us know if you received it and whether you found it useful in the MSE Forum. But wait... before you jump for joy, be sure you've received the full sum you're entitled to...

Did your bank underpay you?

Rejected by your bank instead? Carry on to the Ombudsman

An ode to remember: Write to the ombudsman

If you're rejected during the reclaim stage using our Resolver tool, you'll automatically receive a trigger reminder to take your complaint to the Ombudsman. There'll be a few brief details to fill in and then our tool will send on the details of your original complaint to the Ombudsman. Otherwise, if you're using our template letters, it'll be up to you to escalate it.

FOSThe Ombudsman is the official, independent service for settling disputes between financial companies and their customers. It is completely free to use, and will adjudicate on whether your complaint should be paid out.

It'll decide whether your policy was sold unfairly or unreasonably (see some examples). It can only do so once eight weeks have passed from the date of your first complaint letter, unless your bank sends a final letter within the eight-week period.

While the process of using the Ombudsman PPI claim form is simple, and the amount of money you could receive is massive, it's not usually quick. Your case may take a couple of years to be settled, so don't count on the cash now.

How to make a complaint to the Ombudsman

Quick questions

I'm still waiting on the Ombudsman, how long will it take?

My bank agreed to refund PPI but I'm still waiting, can I speed things up?

Can a PPI refund be taken to pay debts, eg, an overdraft / loan?

I've been offered a goodwill payment. What does this mean, and can I get more?

I accepted a goodwill offer from my lender, can I reclaim more?

I've received two payments – is the interest paid separately?

Just got a payout but now wondering about Plevin?

We've yet to find out exactly how the City regulator will act on claims about Plevin. However, we'll tell you the moment we hear its plans and update this guide immediately.

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For all the latest deals, guides and loopholes - join the 10m who get it. Don't miss out