The Professional Financial Claims Association (PFCA)

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A respected ‘Voice’

The PFCA is a respected ‘voice’ within the industry; it is consulted on matters of change by the CMR with whom it maintains regular open communication on numerous matters. It is also an active and recognised member of the CMR’s Regulatory Consultative Group and also engages with the FCA, including the FCA’s regulatory transition team. The PFCA was a significant participant in the response to the CMR when it responded to and consulted on “Cutting the costs for consumers – financial claims” this is demonstrated in the CMR’s Consultation Response (16th November 2017) as part of the proposed amendments to the Financial Guidance and Claims Bill.

About the PFCA

The Professional Financial Claims Association (PFCA) was founded by some of the UK’s leading financial claims management companies (CMCs) in 2013. This followed a consultation period with the Claims Management Regulator (CMR), Sir Mark Boleat, industry trade bodies, other associations, consumer groups’ including Moneysavingexpert.com, Which? and experts in the field of financial services. It was clear during this period of consultation there was a desire for more accountability and adherence with CMR regulation which would help raise standards within the financial claims management sector, also to highlight poor practices and ensure that those who do continually work towards higher standards of consumer care were recognised. The PFCA acknowledged that it would not represent all such firms, however, it welcomed open dialogue with firms and other parties interested in restoring faith and confidence within the sector. This it continues to do.

Our Objectives

Highlighting professional and ethical standards and practices within the claims management sector, to become recognised as a credible and authoritative ‘voice’ on behalf of its members. ‘Putting Consumers First’, helping them understand the PFCA’s values, restoring a general erosion of trust and ensuring they have ‘access to justice’.

Role of the PFCA

  • An authoritative and credible ‘voice’ within the CMC sector
  • A Code of Practice which ‘puts the consumer first’
  • Independent accountability for regulatory compliance
  • Demonstrable wealth of experience in financial claims management
  • Committed to high standards of consumer care
  • Addressing consumer issues and industry negativity
  • Offering the CMC sector Services and Benefits

High standards and independent accountability – How?

Key to raising the bar and compliance with CMR regulation the PFCA, following consultation, published its own Code of Practice (COP) which has 54 enhancements to current required regulation. Compliance with this COP is ensured with both new membership Audits and annual member Audits. These are carried out by Rockstead, an independent asset, business, process and review company. This requirement for new members has often proved to be a barrier to entry for membership.

Addressing Consumer and industry negativity

The Financial Claims Management Sector had been subject to rapid growth with over 1,100 firms authorised by the Ministry of Justice in 2013. This regulation is now under the Claims Management Regulator (CMR) and numbers have reduced to less than 800 as the market consolidates. Growth had been fuelled by one financial mis-selling scandal after another being exposed by regulators. In particular mis-sold PPI, this attracted numerous CMCs to enter the sector; many have operated outside of its regulatory requirements, often to the detriment of consumers. The PFCA sets out to distinguish its members from questionable practices adopted by such CMCs.