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Guarantor loans complaints surge by over 3,000%

Guarantor loans were the most complained about products between October and December last year, with over 10,000 cases, according to the latest data from the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS)

The number of guarantor loans complaints was up by more than 3,000%, during those three months compared to the same period in 2019.


In the same three-month period, the FOS received over 6,000 complaints about home credit, compared to 430 complaints in the same period the year before. According to the FOS, almost all of these complaints were about unaffordable lending. Home credit also had the highest uphold rates – at 84%.


For the first time in over a decade, payment protection insurance (PPI) was not the most complained about product, although grievances have increased across other products and services.


Caroline Wayman, chief ombudsman and chief executive of the FOS, said: “Excluding PPI, new complaints are up by over 55% compared to the same period last year, with more and more people asking for our help to resolve problems with financial businesses.”


In total, the FOS received 72,498 new complaints in the quarterly period – five percent more than the previous three months.


The FOS’s more detailed analysis shows that its case handlers have continued to see high uphold rates across credit products, where they see the most complaints about unaffordable lending.


Its statement explained that these high levels of detriment may be a factor in the level of claims management company (CMC) activity in the complaints about credit products brought forward.


CMCs are involved in more than half of the complaints (54%) about credit products the financial ombudsman sees, compared with an average of just over a third of complaints (35%) in its casework as a whole.

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