MSE News

Regulator enlists Gok Wan and Fred from First Dates in PPI campaign

First it used Arnold Schwarzenegger's animatronic head to urge consumers to reclaim PPI – now the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has enlisted two more celebrities in its campaign as next year's deadline approaches. 

The financial regulator announced today that it has recruited fashion guru Gok Wan (pictured above) and restauranteur Fred Sirieux, best known for his role on reality TV dating programme First Dates, to help "empower the UK public to complain with confidence".

It comes as the latest part of the regulator's publicity blitz aimed at getting those who've been mis-sold PPI to file claims ahead of the 29 August 2019 cut-off. The FCA also released survey findings today which it says show 15 million people across the UK regularly miss out on refunds and compensation because they lack the confidence to complain, with 72% of those surveyed saying they wished they were better at complaining.  

If you've been mis-sold PPI, the clock is now ticking. See our Reclaim PPI for Free guide for full help.

What is PPI and how do I reclaim?

PPI was an insurance policy sold when you got a loan, credit or store card, catalogue account, overdraft or car finance. 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 and now, because of a ruling called Plevin, even just having had it means you're likely due some cash back.

The original mis-selling has left many paying thousands for potentially worthless cover – and you could even have had it without knowing (see our Mis-selling Checklist for full info).

Remember, you do NOT need to pay a company to reclaim PPI for you – see our Reclaim PPI for free guide for full help.

What do the celebs say?

The FCA says it's enlisted Gok Wan and Fred Sirieux to help consumers complain, as part of its PPI reclaim campaign. It told MoneySavingExpert.com both celebrities are being paid for their support, though it won't say how much.

Gok Wan, a fashion consultant and TV presenter who rose to fame on Channel 4's How to Look Good Naked, said: "As a nation we tend to shy away from sticking up for ourselves, even when we feel we've been given a raw deal. But, just like fashion, complaining is all about feeling fearless. That's why I'm supporting the FCA's PPI deadline campaign – to help the UK complain with confidence, whether it's about bad service when shopping to claiming for mis-sold PPI."

Fred Sirieux, a restaurateur and TV presenter best known as the maître d' at Channel 4's First Dates restaurant, added: "Complaining gets things done – it makes people sit up and take notice. They realise you mean business. Be confident, and don't feel bad about complaining when something isn't right. Like if you've been mis-sold PPI – now is the time to act, before it's too late."

What does the FCA say?

FCA chief executive Andrew Bailey said: "Almost three quarters of us wish we were better at complaining and the same number say it's important to them to be treated fairly. With time running out to claim for mis-sold PPI, we want to make sure everyone feels empowered to check and complain before the deadline on 29 August 2019."