Anyone who has been awarded compensation by the Financial Ombudsman Service following complaints about financial service providers, may now be entitled to a further payout.
This follows a recent High Court decision acknowledging that someone who has accepted an Ombudsman’s award may be able to go on to claim damages through the courts for further losses arising out of the same complaint.
Previously even if the Ombudsman agreed with the complainant’s position he may have been unable to award full compensation as a result of the limit he is empowered to award (currently £150,000). People then faced the difficult choice of either accepting the Ombudsman’s decision and writing off the balance of their claim, or rejecting the Ombudsman’s decision and embarking on a lengthy and costly legal process, with no guarantee of success.
However, in this landmark case in the High Court, the judge ruled that a claimant should not be prevented from claiming further damages even if they had accepted the Ombudsman’s decision.
An added complication for anyone seeking compensation is that a previous case produced contradictory outcome – clouding the legal position on these claims. The legal position will remain uncertain unless and until the issue reaches the Court of Appeal.
This is a confusing issue and if you would like clarity and some advice on how this judgement might affect you or have any questions about the recent case, please feel free to contact Michael Peacock on 0114 290 6287.