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Making complaints relating to money


Have you ever been in a situation where you have been treated poorly by a financial institution? Lots of people have and have wondered what their rights are in this type of situation. Read out handy guide to making an effective complaint when you are dissatisfied with a financial product or service.


Try to resolve the matter internally and informally first 


If you are unhappy with a financial product or service or how it has been administered, you should contact your bank or building society to make an informal complaint. Simply try to explain calmly what has upset you and why you feel you are entitled to complain. Before you make any informal complaint, if helps to know exactly the right person you need to complain to, so make sure you ask how and to whom you should make a complaint. If you are angry it may make you feel better to let off steam by yelling at the first person you come into contact with but this merely wastes everyone’s time and will not achieve much. Instead make a note of the situation and have this handy when you are telling your story of why you are not happy. It will act as an aid memoire if you get flustered when communicating your issue or complaint. When you make an informal complaint you should always request to be told a time-scale for the resolution of the issue (reputable lenders like
Wonga for personal loans or Everline for business loans will usually comply with reasonable requests like this). If you are being expected to wait an extraordinarily long length of time then this can be a matter to complain about of itself. 


Take a formal approach if informal resolution attempts fail 

If you have tried and failed to resolve the matter informally, the next step is to follow the formal complaints procedures which have been set out by the lender or outlet concerned. Ask to be given a complaints brochure or leaflet if they have one. You should then put your complaint in writing and set out clearly why you are unhappy and what you want to happen for the matter to be resolved. You should give the person who is dealing with the complaint a reasonable amount of time in which to resolve the issue, and state this in the formal letter of complaint. Before you post the letter, you should ensure that it is addressed correctly and that it will reach the person concerned. Keep a record of the letter and keep a copy of the proof of postage, as this may be required later if you are asked to prove that you contacted anyone with a letter of complaint. 


Keep records and keep communications in writing 

As soon as you start to adopt
a formal as opposed to an informal means of complaint, then you should start to keep records of all things relevant to the complaint. You should open a file where you can keep everything relating to the complaint in one place so you can refer to it if necessary. 


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