Independent dispute resolution scheme celebrates 10-year anniversary

Chief executive says she has seen first-hand “how beneficial alternative dispute resolution can be”

Independent dispute resolution scheme celebrates 10-year anniversary

Financial Services Complaints Limited (FSCL), an independent not-for-profit external dispute resolution scheme, recently marked its 10-year anniversary.

At the organisation’s anniversary celebrations, Susan Taylor, chief executive officer of FSCL, said that a 36% increase in complaints over the past financial year “demonstrated the need for financial service dispute resolution.”

“We hope the sharp increase over the past financial year reflects both our consumer outreach work and our scheme participants more readily referring clients who have unresolved complaints to FSCL,” she said. 

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However, Taylor said that organisation’s role is broader than just investigating and resolving complaints.

“Over the past decade we have seen FSCL’s role in the financial services industry evolve,” she said. “An increasingly important part of our role is education by sharing the lessons learned from complaints. We have built up a wealth of experience in our team and a useful body of case notes.  We have made contributions to new policy and legislation that have helped shape the laws applying to financial services and advice, working to improve industry standards and financial literacy.”

Taylor added that, in her over 25 years’ experience in dispute resolution, she had seen first-hand how “beneficial alternative dispute resolution can be and the value that can be added to a business by effective complaints handling.”

“Well-handled complaints serve to reinforce public confidence in the financial systems we all rely on,” she said.

Since its inception, FSCL has dealt with more than 30,000 complaints and enquiries about financial service providers, resolved more than 1988 disputes, and awarded over $6 million in compensation.

Total enquires for the 2019/2020 financial year peaked at 3,422, or an average of 13 complaints a day.

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