The PPI Mis-Selling Scandal and the Man on the Street
There was much talk in the newspapers some months ago of the Libor scandal, a financial scandal that affected banks in the UK and elsewhere. It involved price fixing in a complex fashion, and applied to many businesses taking out loans. However, serious as it is, Libor is nothing compared to the payment protection insurance (PPI) scandal, which has affected – over a number of years – many thousands of average households, and to potentially damaging effect. The average Joe has been fleeced by lenders for many years, and it took a few with suspicions to notice.
How the Banks got away with it
When faced with a complex financial situation and an authority figure it is not unusual for the average man or woman to take what they tell them at face value. This is, basically, what happened to great numbers of borrowers who were mis-sold PPI. They were bamboozled by the jargon but charmed by the smile, and assured that all was well when, in fact, they were being sold a product that they either did not need, or that they could have bought cheaper elsewhere. Reading the small print – always a sensible idea – would tell them nothing, for the fault was with the regulations.
Getting Greedy with Customer’s Cash
It was a prime example of lenders trying to get away with more than they were permitted and, for a while, it worked; 34million PPI policies have been sold since 1991, and many millions of them will either not have been necessary or were mis-sold in some way. The problem was that the customer was leaving the bank happy that they had secured their required loan or mortgage, unaware that they were in fact paying over the odds for a PPI policy.
The Present Day
There are those that will say it has never been easier to make a claim for mis-sold PPI – and in many ways they are right – but there are still reasons to be wary. Only a few weeks ago staff at a call centre acting for the Lloyds Group were alleged to have been told to handle claims in a way that was not as easy as it should be, so the trust in the banks is still not there. Many people, instead of going to the bank direct, prefer to use a PPI Claims Company, where the expertise is independent, and the focus on getting the customer what is rightfully theirs.