Complaints Procedure - Customer Information (revised January 2015)
Regulation of the UK financial industry is covered by the Financial Conduct Authority
Affinity Leasing Ltd will handle complaints, made by any means (email, fax, or post, or verbally). All complains can be submitted free of charge.
What is a complaint?
A complaint is any expression of dissatisfaction from a client, potential client, former client or on behalf of a client.
A complaint can be received verbally or in writing and can be justified or not and can either:
- allege that the complainant has suffered (or may suffer) financial loss, material distress or material inconvenience; and/or
- relates to an activity of Affinity Leasing which falls within the jurisdiction of the Financial Ombudsman Service
On receipt of a complaint, Affinity Leasing will:
- send the complainant a prompt written acknowledgement providing early reassurance that it has received the complaint and is dealing with it; and
- ensure the complainant is kept informed thereafter of the progress of the measures being taken for the complaint's resolution.
Thereafter Affinity Leasing will:
- investigate the complaint competently, diligently and impartially, obtaining additional information as necessary;
- assess fairly, consistently and promptly:
- the subject matter of the complaint;
- the subject matter of the complaint;
- whether the complaint should be upheld;
- what remedial action or redress (or both) may be appropriate;
- if appropriate, whether it has reasonable grounds to be satisfied that another respondent may be solely or jointly responsible for the matter alleged in the complaint;
Taking into account all relevant factors, Affinity Leasing will:
- offer redress or remedial action when it decides this is appropriate;
- explain to the complainant promptly and, in a way that is fair, clear and not misleading, its assessment of the complaint, its decision on it, and any offer of remedial action or redress; and
- comply promptly with any offer of remedial action or redress accepted by the complainant.
Factors that may be relevant in the assessment of a complaint include the following:
- all the evidence available and the particular circumstances of the complaint;
- similarities with other complaints received by Affinity Leasing Ltd;
- relevant guidance published by the FCA, the BVRLA, or the Financial Ombudsman Service; and
- appropriate analysis of decisions by the Financial Ombudsman Service concerning similar complaints received by the Affinity Leasing Ltd
Final or other response within eight weeks
Affinity Leasing will, on or before the end of eight weeks after its receipt of the complaint, send the complainant a 'final response', being a written response from the respondent which:
- accepts the complaint and, where appropriate, offers redress or remedial action; or
- offers redress or remedial action without accepting the complaint; or
- rejects the complaint and gives reasons for doing so;
- encloses a copy of the Financial Ombudsman Service's standard explanatory leaflet; and
- informs the complainant that if he remains dissatisfied with the respondent's response, he may now refer his complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service or BVRLA and must do so within six months; or
- a written response which:
- explains why it is not in a position to make a final response and indicates when it expects to be able to provide one;
- informs the complainant that he may now refer the complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service; and
- encloses a copy of the Financial Ombudsman Service standard explanatory leaflet.
Complainant's written acceptance
This does not apply if the complainant has already indicated in writing acceptance of a response by Affinity Leasing, provided that the response:
- informed the complainant how to pursue his complaint with Affinity Leasing if he/she remains dissatisfied; and
- referred to the ultimate availability of the BVRLA or Financial Ombudsman Service if he/she remains dissatisfied with Affinity Leasing's response
Speed and quality of response
It is expected that within eight weeks of their receipt, almost all complaints to Affinity Leasing will have been substantively addressed by it through a final response or response as described by the FCA. When assessing a respondent's response to a complaint, the FCA may have regard to a number of factors, including, the quality of response, as against the complaints resolution rules, as well as the speed with which it was made.
As a result of any complaint, Affinity Leasing will put in place appropriate management controls and take reasonable steps to ensure that in handling complaints we will identify and remedy any recurring or systemic problems, for example
- analysing the causes of individual complaints so as to identify root causes common to types of complaint
- considering whether such root causes may also affect other processes or products, including those not directly complained of; and
- correcting, where reasonable to do so, such root causes
- a process to consider whether the root causes identified may affect other processes or products
- a process for deciding whether root causes discovered should be corrected and how this should be done
- regular reporting to the senior personnel where information on recurring or systemic problems may be needed for them to play their part in identifying, measuring, managing and controlling risks of regulatory concern; and
- keeping records of analysis and decisions taken by senior personnel in response to management information on the root causes of complaints
Affinity Leasing will aim to resolve complaints at the earliest possible opportunity, minimising the number of unresolved complaints which need to be referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service or BVRLA.
Where a complaint against Affinity Leasing Ltd is referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service or the BVRLA, Affinity Leasing Limited will cooperate fully and comply promptly with any settlements or awards made.