Martin Lewis: Don’t wait for Thursday’s PPI reclaiming deadline – get complaints in TODAY

MSE launches emergency PPI reclaim kit to help those who’ve left it late beat the cut-off

The deadline to reclaim mis-sold Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) is tomorrow (Thursday) – Martin Lewis is urgently warning consumers not to ignore it, and to treat TODAY (Wednesday) as the real deadline to beat the last-minute rush.

The reclaiming guillotine falls at 11:59pm on Thursday 29 August 2019. The UK’s biggest consumer website, MoneySavingExpert.com (MSE), has created its new PPI Emergency Reclaim Kit, focusing only on the minimum consumers must do to stop the door being slammed shut if they are due money, and haven’t done anything about it yet.

As long as consumers start a claim before the deadline, it can proceed as normal and it can still be escalated later to the free Financial Ombudsman Service. After the deadline, the only route to reclaim will be the much more difficult option of going to court.

Martin Lewis, founder of MoneySavingExpert.com, said: “Thankfully in most cases, banks have agreed that even just checking if you had PPI counts as starting a complaint. So don’t be a last-minute Lilly or Larry. Websites crash. Phone lines get clogged up. You should expect the unexpected to happen with such a huge deadline. In your head, imagine TODAY (Wednesday) is the real deadline and sort it NOW.

“If you’re not sure, just fill in the details anyway and check if you had PPI. I'm not encouraging you to make a spurious claim, more to just get in over the line, and buy yourself more time to find out if you are due money later. If not, simply don't proceed any further later.

“You don’t need to pay a firm to do this for you – you can do it yourself for free. The easiest way is to use the free MSE tool. Or you can check directly with a bank – if so ask it for written confirmation that your enquiry has been submitted to make sure your claim has been triggered. If it’s on the phone or in person, make a note of the name of who you spoke to, the time of the call and ask them to assure you that your claim is triggered. Then email it to yourself so you have a time stamped contemporaneous note.”

Martin Lewis is available for interviews on Wednesday 28 August 2019. Please get in touch with the press office to make a bid.

The PPI Emergency Reclaim Kit

THE PPI DEADLINE IS THIS THURSDAY 29 AUGUST – DO NOT IGNORE IT. And yes, we are shouting (we'd shout from the rooftops if we could). If you've ever had a credit card, mortgage, loan, overdraft, catalogue debt, car finance or a store card, urgently check (and check again) if you had PPI. Don't think "I know I didn't" – they may've snuck it on even if you said no to it – and as the average payout is £3,000, it's worth your time.

And it's because the reclaiming guillotine slices down so soon that we've added this emergency PPI toolkit. The full guide tells you everything you need to know about reclaiming PPI, but here we've focused only on the minimum you must do to stop the door being slammed shut if you're due money and haven't yet done anything about it.

1. The last time you can submit a PPI claim online is 11.59pm this Thursday - but DON'T leave it until then

As long as you START a claim before the deadline, it can then proceed as normal and you can still escalate it later to the financial ombudsman. After the deadline, the only reclaiming route will be the much more difficult option of going to court.

With all major banks the very last time for submitting claims online (including via our free PPI reclaim tool) is 11:59pm on Thursday. If you're going to do it by phone, the cut-off varies between 6pm and 11:59pm. For postal submissions, some banks say it's OK if you post the letter on 29 August, others require that they must have received it by then. Claims in person will need to be done within opening hours. See Bank by Bank PPI deadlines.

Martin's warning: "Don't be a last-minute Lilly or Larry. Websites crash. Phone lines get clogged up. You should expect the unexpected with such a huge deadline. In your head imagine WEDNESDAY is the deadline and sort it by then (if you're reading this after that, just bloomin’ do it NOW)."

2. To beat the deadline in most cases you simply need to check IF you had PPI

Banks used to treat a 'check whether you had PPI' and 'complaint about PPI' as separate things. Now most banks have agreed with regulator the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) that someone simply enquiring if they had PPI counts as starting a complaint for the purposes of the deadline. 

  • Major firms which count a check as beating the deadline: Bank of Scotland, Barclaycard, Barclays, Capital One, Citibank, Clydesdale Bank, Co-operative Bank, Egg, Halifax, HSBC, Lloyds, MBNA, Mint, Nationwide, Natwest, NRAM (Northern Rock), RBS, Ulster Bank, Yorkshire Bank.
  • Major firms which still separate a check and a complaint: Santander (though if you do a check with it, provided it is before the 11:59pm 29 August, deadline then you will have 12 weeks after it responds to put in a complaint).

Therefore in most cases to trigger a claim you simply need to get in touch with the bank to ask it whether you had PPI – our free PPI reclaim tool includes this.

Doing at least that stops the clock. If needed, later you can think further about why you're reclaiming – ie, whether you were mis-sold – and either respond to the bank or add further information. Remember the Plevin rule means many are due money back even just for having had PPI.

Martin's warning: "If you are checking directly with your bank, ask it for a written confirmation that your enquiry has been submitted, and that this means your claim is triggered.

"If it's on the phone or in person, make a note of the name of who you spoke to, the time of the call, and ask it to assure you the claim is triggered. Then email it to yourself so you have a time stamped contemporaneous note.

"If you're doing it via our Resolver tool, we have it confirmed in writing from all the banks for whom a 'check if you had PPI' is enough, that doing it via Resolver counts."

Bank by bank PPI deadlines

Bank
Phone Online Post Branch Automatically turning checks into complaints?
Nationwide
11.59pm 11.59pm 5 Sep (if posted by 29 Aug) Normal branch closure time Yes
RBS Group (1) 8pm 11.59pm 5 Sep (if posted prior to deadline) N/A Yes
Barclays 11.59pm 11.59pm 29 Aug (letter must arrive by this date) Normal branch closure time Yes
Santander 11.59pm 11.59pm 5 Sep (if posted before 29 Aug) N/A No (2)
HSBC 11.59pm 11.59pm 3 Sep (if posted prior to deadline) Normal branch closure time Yes
Lloyds Banking Group (3) 11.59pm 11.59pm 29 Aug (letter must arrive by this date) Normal branch closure time Yes
Co-op Bank 11.59pm 11.59pm 29 Aug (letter must arrive by this date) Normal branch closure time Yes
Clydesdale Bank (4) 11.59pm 11.59pm 5 Sep (if posted by deadline) Normal branch closure time Yes
(1) Includes NatWest and Ulster Bank. (2) Customers who raise a PPI check between 29 May and 29 August will receive an additional 12 weeks from the date of Santander's response confirming PPI was found to file a PPI complaint. (3) Includes Halifax, MBNA and Bank of Scotland. (4) Includes Yorkshire Bank.

3. What you need to put in your claim

For the huge majority of those who just need you to 'start a check', the very minimum you need to know is who the lender was. If you're not sure of that, then you may be able to find it on your credit file. See how to check who past lenders were.

You'll also need to give your name, (including the name used to take out loan/credit if different), current address and date of birth.

You can do all this via our free PPI reclaiming tool. Of course if you have more information such as details of the policy name, your address when you took it out, why you had it and why you think you were mis-sold (see our mis-selling checklist) all the better, it'll speed up the claim later on.

Martin's warning: "If you're not sure, just fill in the details anyway and check if you had PPI. I'm not encouraging you to make a spurious claim, more to just get in under the line, and buy yourself more time to find out if you are due money later. If not, simply don't proceed any further later."

4. Once you've submitted the claim - then read the main guide

Now you've beaten the deadline, the pressure is off. You will likely still have more to answer, so do read through our comprehensive help and guide on how to proceed.

If you're really stuck, regulator the FCA has a free helpline too that you can call on 0800 101 8800.

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