Fianna Fáil has published a bill empowering the Financial Services Ombudsman to publish the complaints record of financial service providers.
The Ombudsman is prevented from doing so at present.
Welcoming the Bill, Senator Power said “This legislation would allow the Ombudsman to publish complaints details concerning banks, insurance companies, stockbrokers, mortgage brokers, hire purchase providers, health insurance companies and others.”
“I believe that ‘naming and shaming’ errant financial services providers would help to weed out remaining bad practices in the financial services industry. It would also provide consumers with access with important information about providers when making decisions”, she said.
Fianna Fail’s Finance Spokesperson Deputy McGrath pointed out “In recent years, the Ombudsman has uncovered a litany of cases where basic consumer rights have been breached. We have had cases of people’s life savings being jeopardised through the mis-selling of investment products, of fixed rate mortgage holders being misled about the implications of moving to a variable rate and of insurance companies wrongfully seeking to withhold pay-outs to customers. As recently as this week, we have reports that thousands of customers were wrongly sold payment protection insurance that they could never benefit from. The Ombudsman should be able to fully highlight the culprits in all cases of such consumer abuse. There’s no doubt that this Bill will help consumers.”
Senator Power also welcomed the Governmnent’s decision to accept the Fianna Fail bill. “Transparency and improved customer accountability are not party political issues”, she said, “I welcome the Government’s decision to accept this bill and hope that all parties can work together to address other issues of concern to Irish families.”

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