How to Complain

The Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board has provisions under the Employment Act 2006 to protect whistleblowers. A guide from the Department of Trade and Industry, which specifically cites disclosures to the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board on the operation of license holders, by workers who are concerned about wrongdoing or failures, as disclosures that would be protected.

Making a Complaint About a License Holder

1. Make a Complaint To The Licensed Business

If you have a complaint about the products or services provided by a license holder, you should first try to resolve the complaint directly with that licensed business. All license holders should do their best to make sure that your enquiries or complaints are dealt with promptly and efficiently. The Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board expects license holders to acknowledge your complaint in a timely manner and investigate thoroughly within 12 weeks.

If you do not receive an acknowledgement within a reasonable time, you should contact the Chief Executive of the license holder. Complaining first to the license holder allows the business an opportunity to put things right.

The Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board requires license holder to have procedures in place for the proper handling of customer complaints. These procedures should tell you how to lodge a complaint with them and you are entitled to receive details of the procedures on request. The license holder’s complaints procedure should be exhausted before any further action is contemplated.

2. When to make a complaint to the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board

If you believe that your complaint has not been handled properly you may wish to seek the assistance of the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board. We will do what we can to help, although as the financial services regulator, our role is to ensure that a license holder is being managed prudently in a fit and proper manner. Any interest which the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board takes in a complaint will therefore normally be confined to ensuring that the license holder has complied with our regulatory requirements under the relevant legislation.

The Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board does not have the power to arbitrate in a dispute between a complainant and license holder, or to recommend or enforce any compensation award. Those considering lodging complaints should always bear in mind these limitations, although an additional option may be to approach the Financial Services Ombudsman Scheme ("FSOS") see 3 below. However, it is useful for the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board to be made aware of complaints against businesses it supervises. This is because a complaint might draw attention to general shortcomings in a license holder such as inadequacy of systems and lack of competence by its managers, directors or employees.

If you decide to make a complaint to the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board, you should put your complaint in writing, with full details of the nature of your complaint, your name, and how we may contact you. We do not deal with anonymous or oral complaints.

We will need your authority to release details of your complaint to the license holder concerned. Therefore, when writing to us you should include an authorization for us to discuss your complaint with the license holder.

3. The role of the Financial Services Ombudsman Scheme

In view of the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board limited role regarding complaints, in January 2002 the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board established the Financial Services Ombudsman Scheme, to independently review any eligible complaints made by private individuals that have not been resolved satisfactorily with the licensed business. In particular, if you have been disadvantaged financially, your complaint should be directed to the Financial Services Ombudsman Scheme. Further details on this can be obtained from the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board Office of Fair Trading.

The Ombudsman will consider a complaint where a financial service has been provided from the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board regardless of where the private individual is based in the world. However, the scheme only covers a specific range of financial services i.e. insurance, investments, banking, mortgages, credit, pension and other financial advice. It does not cover financial services provided by Corporate Service Providers or Trust Service Providers.

4. How the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board will review your complaint

The Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board will issue an acknowledgement within five working days upon receipt of a written complaint. This acknowledgement will identify who will be handling the complaint and their contact details. If additional information is required, this will be requested.

The next step is to understand the nature of the complaint and identify whether or not a regulatory or supervisory issue is involved. We will review the complaint in order to ensure that the license holder has followed its own complaint procedures properly; and that the license holder has met the regulatory requirements set out in the Financial Services Act 2008 and the Financial Services Rule Book.

If a regulatory or supervisory issue is not involved then, regretfully, we will not be able to pursue the complaint with the license holder and the complainant will be directed to other available options.

If the supporting documentation provides evidence that a license holder may have fallen short of its regulatory obligations this may result in regulatory action being taken against the license holder. The Financial Services Act 2008 treats communications between Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board and its license holders as confidential. In view of this we will not be able to provide details of any regulatory action taken as a result of your complaint. We will however inform you when the complaint has been fully investigated and is considered closed. We will aim to conclude investigation of a complaint within a maximum of 12 weeks. However, if we are unable to do so, we will send you regular written updates.

All complaints received by the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board are formally recorded and a complaints report is considered by the Board of the Swiss Commodity Market Regulatory Commission on a regular basis.

5. Taking your complaint further

If appropriate, ultimately a complainant can resort to legal action, however this can be costly and time consuming especially for private individuals.

If you have already taken legal advice or commenced legal proceedings in respect of financial losses which you believe you have incurred do not stop progressing with this action because you have made a complaint to the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board. As explained above, the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board cannot act as an arbitrator or make financial awards to a customer.

Complaints about Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board

1. Introduction

The Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board is committed to acting professionally and fairly at all times.

The Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board views complaints as an opportunity to examine potential weaknesses and to explore ways in which performance might be improved, or the role of the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board better understood. Our complaints procedure has been designed to ensure that any complaints about our actions or omissions are handled fairly and consistently.

2. How to make a complaint

If you have been directly affected by our actions, or if you have a direct involvement or interest in the subject of the complaint, you may complain to us. A guide to our procedures for handling complaints is shown below.

If you wish to make a formal complaint, it must be made in writing, addressed to the Chief Executive and you must specify that it is a formal complaint.

If you make an oral complaint which cannot be resolved on the spot, we will ask you to confirm your complaint in writing if you wish it to be investigated further.

3. Who do I complain to?

If your complaint is about the actions or omissions of the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board you should write to:

The Chief Executive
The Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board
E-mail: [email protected]

4. How will my complaint be handled?

Your complaint will be investigated by a senior member of staff, who is independent of the matter being complained about.

Complaints are acknowledged within five business days and are resolved as quickly as possible. We endeavor to complete our investigation of your complaint within four weeks. However, if this is not possible, we will write to you within four weeks to advise on the progress of our review and when we expect to complete the investigation.

On completion of our investigation, we will send you a report. Our report will advise if your complaint has been upheld and if so what steps will be taken to remedy the situation. If your complaint has been rejected, we will advise why. Prior to sending our report, the investigating manager will discuss your complaint with another independent manager, to assess whether your complaint has been investigated thoroughly and you have been treated fairly. All complaints are treated in confidence as far as possible.

5. What if I feel that my complaint has not been properly addressed?

If you feel that your complaint has not been properly addressed, or has not been handled properly, you may write to the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board to seek a Review. Your request for a Review must be submitted within four weeks of the date of our report to you following our investigation.

6. Complaints that are covered by the scheme:

The complainant must have a direct involvement or interest in the subject of the complaint.
The complaint should not concern a formal decision which has an independent appeal mechanism or where the appeal mechanism has not been exhausted.

The complaint must be made within twelve months of the date on which the complainant became aware of the event which is the subject of the complaint, unless the complainant can demonstrate good reason for a delay in making the complaint.

  • A complaint may be that the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board has failed to make a decision.
  • A complaint may be about a significant mistake, lack of care, unreasonable delay, or lack of proportionality.
  • A complaint may be about the failure of administrative arrangements or an over-restrictive or narrow interpretation of such arrangements.
  • A complaint may be about the application of unfair or inappropriate remedies.
  • A complaint may concern breach of confidentiality.
  • A complaint may be about damage to property.
  • A complaint may be about the attitude or behaviour of a member of staff.

Complaints which fall outside these guidelines will only be investigated at the discretion of the Chief Executive

7. Recording of complaints

All complaints received by the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board are recorded for internal monitoring purposes, with a summary of the outcome. A complaints report is given to the Board of the Inter-Global Financial Regulatory Board on a regular basis.

 

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