Businesses and workplace are learning to function remotely, restaurants are offering delivery only and we have all become accustomed to an occasional Teams meeting (or 5). And we’re not the only ones continuing our daily lives from our homes. Due to government restrictions in response to the coronavirus, some courts have started to conducted PPI hearings remotely by computer link video calls.
Could this be the future?
We believe this can be extremely positive. The audio & video link can be as good as being in person. As the inconvenience and expense of having to attend the court is removed, we are confident that this is the future for court hearings The courts as a result of these unprecedented times have worked hard to create an alternative to physical hearings and one which can, and does, work.
There may still be a chance to claim
Despite it being more than 4 years since the Supreme Court found that where a lender failed to disclose to a consumer the fact that a substantial commission can cause an unfair relationship and the Courts have since relieved the unfairness by ordering the lender to pay compensation, lenders still try to argue that a consumer must start litigation within 6 years from the date the PPI was added to the loan or paid under the credit agreement.
As lenders stopped selling PPI alongside credit agreements in 2012, this means that most consumers were sold PPI more than 6 years ago. The lenders even though they accept they didn’t inform the consumer that a PPI commission would be paid, still try to avoid liability.
Thankfully, recently a High Court Judge Mr justice Jay, in Canada Square Operations Limited and Potter (2020) EWHC 672 (QB) found that where there was a concealment, the claim is not time-barred. The Lender is appealing the decision however for APJ clients the courts have to apply the law as it stands and therefore consumers are still entitled to claim compensation even where PPI was sold a long time ago.
Patience is key
The FCA has said that it expects businesses to continue to explain to consumers how to complain, and to continue to handle complaints fairly. However, where consumers do make a complaint, they may not hear back from financial businesses within the 8 weeks the FCA’s rules usually require (or the 15 business days for payment services and e-money complaints). The FCA is asking that consumers show patience at this time if they do not receive a final response to their complaint within the usual 8 weeks.
APJ Solicitors are authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority under SRA 629443. ICO number APJ ZA188164.