It seems that there is quite a backlog of endowment mis-selling cases piling up, at the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).
These cases are now likely to take a year or more to resolve. The FOS had budgeted for around 35000 cases, but now believes that it will be dealing with 67000.
The FOS has hired 200 new adjudicators in 2004, but that does not seem to be enough to cope with the increased number of complaints from people holding useless and underperforming endowment policies.
The FOS is pretty "pissed off" with the endowment providers, and believes that they are not co-operating with the FOS adjudicators.
It seems that there are 10 well known trouble making life assurance companies, who simply reject consumer complaints out of hand. These rejected complaints then land on the desk of the FOS.
It seems that these 10 naughty companies don't even bother to investigate the complaints, but are happy to let the poor consumer wait in limbo for 8 weeks (the FSA time limit) before telling them that their complaint is rejected.
Nice trick guys!
I am pleased to note that the names of these 10 companies have been passed on to the FSA, for fines.
It would be even better, if the names were released to the media; thus "naming and shaming" these companies as well.