How long before first contact from the Ombudsman ?

MrEarl

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Hello,

Does anyone know approx. how long you have to wait for someone from the Ombudsman's Office to contact you, following submission of your complaint online (auto acknowledgement received a few weeks ago, but nothing since)?

Many thanks,
 

MrEarl

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Hello,

Thank you for the response.

That's terrible service. If they are that busy, they should have more staff to deal with the level of complaints being investigated.
 

Brendan Burgess

Founder
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Hi MrEarl

As you can imagine, they are completely snowed under with tracker complaints at the moment. They can't really staff up for them as these new hires would need to be trained and then they would end up with nothing to do when the tracker bulge works its way through.

Brendan
 

Brendan Burgess

Founder
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38,704
The procedure is as follows
1) Complaint submitted
2) Letter from FSO acknowledging the complaint and explaining the process and asking the complainant if she will accept mediation.
3) Letter to bank asking them if they will accept mediation.
4) In a tracker case I am involved with, it took AIB two weeks to come back saying that they would not participate in mediation.
5) It has now been sent to the tracker team within the FSO

They say in their letter
The Tracker Investigation Team will manage the investigation of your complaint. This team deal specifically with complaints in relation to tracker interest rates. Please be advised that there is a significant volume of tracker related complaints queued for investigation at this time. The
Tracker Investigation Team progress complaints in date order, starting with the oldest complaints received by this office. We are of the view that this queuing method is the best way of ensuring complaint files are progressed in a fair and efficient manner.


This seems a reasonable approach to me.

Don't forget that there were many tracker complaints lodged over the years with the FSPO and they were all put on hold pending completion of the Central Bank tracker investigation.

So there is this backlog to be dealt with first and there is also a raft of new complaints.

Brendan
 

NoRegretsCoyote

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Part of the problem is that they insist on asking you whether you want a telephone-based mediation process.

This might be fine for something like credit card interest overcharging. But it's not appropriate for something complex like a tracker complaint.

My experience is that, even with a file perfectly in order, it take three months before the investigation process even starts.
 

Brendan Burgess

Founder
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38,704
Part of the problem is that they insist on asking you whether you want a telephone-based mediation process.

This might be fine for something like credit card interest overcharging. But it's not appropriate for something complex like a tracker complaint.
But consider the position if they did not do this.

There would be a huge exchange of files and correspondence on many trivial complaints and the queue for everyone would be longer.

They call you to clarify your complaint. Apparently, in many cases, they can explain the issue to the complainant who then realises that they have no grounds for complaint.

Look at the way people present complex questions on Askaboutmoney. It can be very very hard to understand what the actual complaint or question is. Here is an example

This case would take a long time to just understand the complaint. Imagine the correspondence backwards and forwards. The FSPO might well be able to clarify it in a few minutes over the phone.

And then a chat with the bank involved, and it might be solved quite quickly.

Brendan
 

AH2017

Registered User
Messages
9
But consider the position if they did not do this.

There would be a huge exchange of files and correspondence on many trivial complaints and the queue for everyone would be longer.

They call you to clarify your complaint. Apparently, in many cases, they can explain the issue to the complainant who then realises that they have no grounds for complaint.

Look at the way people present complex questions on Askaboutmoney. It can be very very hard to understand what the actual complaint or question is. Here is an example

This case would take a long time to just understand the complaint. Imagine the correspondence backwards and forwards. The FSPO might well be able to clarify it in a few minutes over the phone.

And then a chat with the bank involved, and it might be solved quite quickly.

Brendan
You might do me the courtesy of deleting my post rather than tear it apart please. I came here for genuine advise as I am at a loss, but you would rather use my post of an example of what not to do.

And for your information we are in week 9 of a 12 week resolution process. I'm sure had there been no grounds to complain or easily resolved it would have been done so by now.

It's amazing how easy it is for someone you dont even know can make you feel like a fool, so cheers for that
 

NoRegretsCoyote

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@Brendan Burgess

Point well taken. I had a case with the FSPO which I eventually won a few years back. A good six months was wasted with the mediation part. There was a huge amount of back and forth with one of their staff who basically didn't have the IQ to understand my complaint.

When it went to Investigations it was dealt with very professionally.
 

TrackerThieves

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122
I have 2 cases.
One is a tracker complaint through Padraic Kissane. This complaint has not been made yet but should start next month. Mine and a number of other individual cases will possibly be as oral hearings with the FSPO. Not sure if other tracker cases have been as oral hearings and cant find too much on the process so if any knows more about this, let me know. I believe an oral hearing or mediation process should be enough to resolve this case. Both myself and Padraic have been stonewalled in relation to this complaint 2 final letters in 4 years both are full of mistakes, contradictions and weak arguments that we have been unable to respond to. The second final letter actually apologized for the "obvious inaccuracies" of the first.

The other is a case into the actions of same lender in relation to arrears handling, missing data and other issues. This complaint was made at the start of December 2018 and a resolution officer began the process end of Feb and has just about completed and is about to go to an investigation. The resolution process is optional for both parties and I think there is an option to meet them in person if necessary. I never though mine would come to a resolution but I tried anyway and glad I did as I understand both the issues and the processes better.
 

TrackerThieves

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yes meant the mediation process, the ombudsman's documentation regularly called it a resolution service. So I have been in the habit of calling it the resolution process/phase
 

roker

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My case is not a mediation issue, they the bank just lost my money during a transfer, they owe me money, I filled in the Ombudsmans form months ago, and have not even had confirmation. Where do I stand?
 

NoRegretsCoyote

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My case is not a mediation issue, they the bank just lost my money during a transfer, they owe me money, I filled in the Ombudsmans form months ago, and have not even had confirmation. Where do I stand?
My experience is that they insist on telephone-based mediation before sending it do investigation. They solve a lot of cases that way, for example the bank just refunding you the money.

They also expect you to have exhausted your complaints with the bank first. So you need communication from the bank saying that they will not refund you after a written complaint by you. Have you done this? Otherwise FSPO will tell you to finish that part first.
 

roker

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I have written 5 letters to the bank, but if they don't play ball I cannot help that, customer services was looking into it then did not respond, if they ignore my letters they will dodge the ombudsman
 

MrEarl

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Hi MrEarl

As you can imagine, they are completely snowed under with tracker complaints at the moment. They can't really staff up for them as these new hires would need to be trained and then they would end up with nothing to do when the tracker bulge works its way through.

Brendan
Hello Mr. Burgess,

While I understand that, I do not accept it to be honest.

The Ombudsman's office have known about the need to staff up for a long time now, the Tracker issue is most likely going to drag on for a couple of years yet etc, so there's no excuse for not hiring in more staff. Sure, it might take time to train them up, but train them on specifics rather than everything, employ them on a 1-2 year contract etc.
 

NoRegretsCoyote

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so there's no excuse for not hiring in more staff. Sure, it might take time to train them up, but train them on specifics rather than everything, employ them on a 1-2 year contract etc.
Public service recruitment and procurement is extremely slow.

I'm not saying that this is the way it should be, just that this is the way that it is.
 

elcato

Moderator
Messages
3,233
I have written 5 letters to the bank, but if they don't play ball I cannot help that, customer services was looking into it then did not respond, if they ignore my letters they will dodge the ombudsman
I suggest you write a letter seeking a final response and register it to the complaints department. Tell them you need it for the FSO. Also tell them you are sending a copy of same letter to the central bank.
 

SaySomething

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565
The FSO will accept no final letter of response, providing you give the bank a reasonable amount of time to provide it to you. Write to them today, giving them 15 working days (3 weeks) to give you a final response. If they do not provide you with one then a copy of your letter to the Ombudsman will be enough to get matters underway.
I had this issue previously with the bank and an Ombudsman complaint.
 

Brendan Burgess

Founder
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38,704
My experience is that they insist on telephone-based mediation before sending it do investigation.
No they can't insist on mediation. They encourage mediation but either party is free to reject it and let it go straight to investigation.

For example, AIB is declining mediation on all the tracker complaints that I am aware of.

Brendan
 
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