How to complain to your claims management company

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1 How to complain to your claims management company Claims Management Regulation March 2013

2 HOW TO COMPLAIN TO YOUR CLAIMS MANAGEMENT COMPANY - CLAIMS MANAGEMENT REGULATION 3 Contents What should you expect from your CMC? 4 How to complain: A three step approach 5 Bringing your complaint to us 7 How to contact us 8 Don t forget 9

3 4 CLAIMS MANAGEMENT REGULATION - HOW TO COMPLAIN TO YOUR CLAIMS MANAGEMENT COMPANY If you use the services of a claims management company (CMC) you have the right to expect clear advice and a reasonable quality of service. This guide provides support when making a complaint to your CMC if something goes wrong, and to explain what you should expect from them once they ve received your complaint. What should you expect from your CMC? They should: Treat you fairly Give you all the information you need to decide what service you require Tell you how your problem will be handled and the options available to you Give you a clear explanation about likely costs Keep you informed of progress and any changes Tell you about your right to complain and how to make a complaint You should make sure you understand what your CMC has told you and shouldn t be afraid to ask questions. Sometimes something goes wrong or the CMC doesn t meet these expectations, and you may feel as though you ve received a poor service. If you find yourself in this position, you may decide to complain. You shouldn t be worried about approaching them; they are all required by our rules of conduct to deal with complaints promptly and fairly.

4 HOW TO COMPLAIN TO YOUR CLAIMS MANAGEMENT COMPANY - CLAIMS MANAGEMENT REGULATION 5 How to complain: A three step approach Be sure about why you want to complain It is important that you are clear in your own mind about the reason for your complaint so that you can describe the problem to your CMC. For example, the CMC has failed to update you on the progress of your claim or you have been charged more than you were expecting. Have a clear idea of what you want to happen as a result of your complaint. For example, would you like the CMC to reduce or waive certain costs or would an apology be enough? This will help the CMC understand how they can put things right if they have provided a poor service. Tell the CMC If you are unhappy with the service you have received, inform your CMC so they have a chance to put things right. Every CMC should explain how their own complaints handling procedure works you can ask them for a copy of their procedure if you do not have one. Make sure you give as much information as you think the business will need in order to deal with it. Use clear language and stick to the facts. Include important details such as reference numbers and dates. You can make your complaint in writing or by the CMC should also accept a verbal complaint. It is usually best however to write to the CMC and send it by recorded delivery so you have a record of your attempt to resolve the issue. Further information on making a complaint is available from the Citizens Advice consumer service, including example letters. Visit or call the Citizens Advice consumer service on Give the CMC time to resolve your complaint You must give the CMC a chance to resolve your complaint. Make your complaint to the CMC as soon as you are aware there s a problem. Work with the CMC to help them carry out an investigation. The CMC may want to speak to you to understand more about your complaint. It is important to cooperate with them and remain calm and focused it may help you both reach a satisfactory outcome. Keep any evidence that could help the CMC investigate and resolve your complaint, such as s and letters. It may also be useful to make a file of documents that you think help to show the poor service you have received, such as invoices, letters and phone bills.

5 6 CLAIMS MANAGEMENT REGULATION - HOW TO COMPLAIN TO YOUR CLAIMS MANAGEMENT COMPANY Don't always expect immediate results some complaints may take time to investigate properly and resolve. Once an investigation has been carried out they should tell you their findings. You should allow the CMC up to four weeks to provide you with either a final response, or an explanation as to why they have not yet resolved your complaint and an indication of when they will next contact you. You should expect the next contact within eight weeks of your initial complaint. If you are not happy with the way your complaint has been handled they should tell you about your right to take the complaint to us (the Claims Management Regulator).

6 HOW TO COMPLAIN TO YOUR CLAIMS MANAGEMENT COMPANY - CLAIMS MANAGEMENT REGULATION 7 Bringing your complaint to us Most complaints are resolved quickly and informally by getting everyone to agree what s fair. If your complaint is not dealt with to your satisfaction within eight weeks of your initial complaint, we may be able to help. You have up to six months (from when you first raised the complaint with the CMC) to bring your complaint to us. What action can we take? We can: Use any information you provide to consider taking enforcement action against a CMC that has broken the conduct rules Work with you and the CMC to try to resolve the complaint if the CMC has failed to deal with your complaint in line with our rules Ask the CMC to provide redress if we find that the CMC has failed to comply with the rules. This can include asking the CMC to apologise to you, re-do work for free, or refund a fee that they shouldn t have charged you. We cannot: Pay you compensation or order a CMC to do so if you have lost out or have received a poor service Take action against a CMC if they haven t broken any rules Information we require Keep copies of any letter and s as well as any notes you might have made about what happened and when. When you contact us, it will be helpful if you have: The name, address and CMR licence number of the CMC involved The date you first told them about your complaint Details of how you made them aware of the complaint The date you first became aware of the problem you are complaining about Details of how they responded to your complaint Our complaint form is designed to help you provide this information.

7 8 CLAIMS MANAGEMENT REGULATION - HOW TO COMPLAIN TO YOUR CLAIMS MANAGEMENT COMPANY How to contact us Write You can write to us at: Claims Management Regulation Unit High Street Burton-upon-Trent Staffordshire DE14 1JS You can us at: If you want to find out more about us and what we do, please visit: Call You can also call us on Our telephone lines are open Monday to Friday between 9:00am and 5:00pm.

8 HOW TO COMPLAIN TO YOUR CLAIMS MANAGEMENT COMPANY - CLAIMS MANAGEMENT REGULATION 9 Don t forget Here are some valuable hints, which should help you to get the result you are looking for: Keep records. It s important that you keep evidence about your complaint. If you have a conversation with someone (either face to face or over the phone) keep a record of who it was and when. Keep records of all written communication such as s and letters. Stay focused. Remember to be clear about what it is you re complaining about and what you think should be done to resolve the complaint. It s important to try and stick to the facts and keep your emotions in check. Be patient. Give the CMC an opportunity to fully investigate your complaint. The CMC has eight weeks from receiving your initial complaint to look into it. If you feel that you re not getting a helpful response, you could escalate your complaint up the chain of command within the CMC. Your rights as a consumer. You are entitled to complain if you have received a poor service and this should be fully and fairly investigated by the CMC. However, a complaint is not always justified and there may be good reasons why an investigation by the CMC does not find in your favour. Whatever the outcome, it should be an open and transparent process for both parties and decisions should be clearly explained.

9 Contact Information For queries concerning information in this publication please contact: Claims Management Regulation Unit High Street Burton-upon-Trent Staffordshire DE14 1JS Website:

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