This policy and procedures detail how Timali Limited (the Firm) will deal with complaints.
The Firm is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and, as such, will act in accordance to the Complaints rules as defined in the FCA Handbook, which will take precedence over the requirements of this policy and procedures.
2. Review of Policy and Procedures
This policy and procedures will be reviewed regularly, at least once a year, and amended as considered necessary by the Firm’s Management Body in the event of changing circumstances or regulations.
3.1. Management Body Responsibilities
The Management Body of the Firm are responsible for the implementation of the Complaints Policy and for monitoring compliance with it.
The Management Body have appointed the Compliance Function as a Complaints Manager.
3.2 Compliance Responsibilities
The Compliance Function is responsible for investigating and analysing complaints and the complaints handling data to identify and address any risks or issues.
3.3 Employee Responsibilities
All employees are expected to refer any verbal or written complaints to the Complaints Manager at the earliest opportunity and to cooperate fully with the Complaints Manager in its investigations.
4.1 Definition of a complaint
The FCA defines a complaint as any oral or written expression of dissatisfaction from or on behalf of a client, whether justified or not, which includes an actual or potential financial loss, material distress or material inconvenience.
The Financial Conduct Authority complaints rules apply to complaints:
- Made by, or on behalf of an eligible complainant
- Relating to regulated activity
- Involving an allegation that the complainant has suffered, or may suffer, financial loss, material distress or material inconvenience
4.2 Definition of eligible complainant
An eligible complainant is a complainant that is
- A consumer (a person acting outside their trade, business or profession)
- A micro enterprise
- A charity with an annual income of less than £1,000,000
- A trustee of a trust which has a net asset value of less than £1,000,000
Complainants that are professional clients or eligible counterparties that are acting outside of their trade or professions in relation to the activity to which the complaint relates are considered to be consumers and, as such, eligible complainants.
If in doubt whether a complainant is an eligible complainant or not, the Firm will treat them as an eligible complainant.
Only eligible complainants can refer their complaints on to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
It is the Firm’s policy to treat all complainants the same, however, eligible complainants are legally defined and have additional rights in law that the Firm must acknowledge and adhere to. The Firm has elected to treat all complaints in the same way for simplicity. Occasionally the Firm may not know if a complainant is ‘eligible’ in which case it will treat them as such and if it becomes necessary, the Financial Ombudsman Service will establish the status of the complainant, not the Firm.
Clients and potential clients are able to submit complaints free of charge.
Complaints will be handled promptly, effectively and in an independent manner, obtaining additional information as necessary.
The Firm will always communicate with clients and potential clients clearly in plain language that is easy to understand and will reply to the complaint without undue delay.
The Firm will assess fairly, consistently and promptly:
- The subject matter of the complaint
- Whether the complaint should be upheld
- What remedial action or redress may be appropriate
- Whether another party may be solely or jointly responsible for the matter alleged in the complaint
The Firm will promptly comply with any offer or remedial activity or redress accepted by the complainant.
The Firm will consider a complaint closed when it has issued a final response.
The Firm will provide information about the Financial Ombudsman Service to eligible complainants on its website and if applicable, in the general conditions of its contracts with eligible complainants in a clear, comprehensible and easily accessible way.
6. The procedure
Refer any complaint verbal or written to the Compliance Officer at the earliest opportunity.
The Compliance Officer will then,
- Make an initial assessment of the complaint, contacting the complainant for further information if required. This can be done via telephone, email or any other appropriate means of communication.
- If there is sufficient information and the complaint can be resolved within 3 business days, then proceed to step 9.
- If the complaint cannot be resolved within 3 business days, send out an initial response letter to the complainant using the Initial Response Letter Template, adding the details known about the complaint by the next working day, stating that the complaint has been received and is being dealt with.
- Investigate the complaint impartially obtaining additional information from the Firm and/or the complainant as necessary.
- Enter the complaint onto the Complaints Log and create a Complaint Record.
- Assess fairly, consistently and promptly:
- The subject matter of the complaint
- Whether the complaint should be upheld
- What remedial action or redress (or both) may be appropriate
- If appropriate, whether it has reasonable grounds to be satisfied that another party/respondent may be solely or jointly responsible for the matter alleged in the complaint.
- If the complaint is resolved, communicate the Firm’s position on the complaint to the complainant and inform them about their options, including that they may be able to refer the complaint to an alternative dispute resolution entity (Financial Ombudsman Service for eligible complainants) or that the complainant may be able to take civil action, using the Final Response Letter template. If the complaint was resolved within 3 days, use the Summary Resolution Communication instead.
- In the final response letter to eligible complainants, enclose a copy of the Financial Ombudsman Service’s standard explanatory leaflet, provide the website address of the Financial Ombudsman Service and inform the complainant that if they are still dissatisfied with the Firm’s response, the complaint may now be referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
- Comply promptly with any offer of remedial action or redress accepted by the complainant.
- Conduct a root cause analysis in the case of any complaint and record with the appropriate action having been taken. Record any actions within the individual complaint record.
- Liaise with senior management if any changes need to be made to the Firm’s procedures based on the analysis.
Update the Complaints Log and Complaints Record with the final decision including details of the amount of any redress offered.
7. Record keeping
The Firm will keep a record of each complaint received and the measures taken for its resolution, including any redress offered, and retain that record for three years from the date the complaint was received.
8. Complaints reporting
Twice a year, the Firm will provide the FCA with a complete report concerning complaints from eligible complainants. Complaints that have been forwarded in their entirety to another party will not be included in the report.
9. Breaches of the Complaints Policy and Procedure
Any breaches of the Complaints Policy and Procedures will be recorded on the Firm’s breach log in conjunction with its Regulatory Breach policy.
Financial Ombudsman Service
Address: The Financial Ombudsman Service, Exchange Tower, London E14 9SR
Tel: 0800 023 4567 (free for most people ringing from a fixed line) or 0300 123 9123 (cheaper for those calling using a mobile) or 44 20 7964 0500 (if calling from abroad)