Wednesday 18 October 2017

Banking giant fined €28m over handling of cover cases

Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

The UK bank which AIB's outgoing chief executive David Duffy will take charge of later this year has been fined £20.7m (€28.7m) for "serious failings" in its handling of complaints about Payment Protection Insurance (PPI).

It is the biggest fine of its type handed down by Britain's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

AIB chief executive David Duffy, pictured below, announced earlier this year that he will leave the Irish lender to become chief executive officer of National Australia Bank's Glasgow-based unit Clydesdale Bank within months.

Britain's financial regulator fined Clydesdale Bank a record £20.7m for failings in how it handled insurance mis-selling claims, including providing false information to the financial ombudsman.

The FCA found serious failings at Clydesdale between May 2011 and July 2013.

It said the bank provided false information to the Financial Ombudsman Service in response to requests for evidence of the records it held on PPI policies sold to customers. The ombudsman steps in when banks and their customers cannot reach agreement.

A team within Clydesdale's PPI complaint handling operation altered records in a small number of cases to make it look as if the bank had no relevant documents and deleted information listing the products sold to some customers, the FCA said.

"The fact that Clydesdale misled the Financial Ombudsman by providing false information about the information it held is particularly serious and this is reflected in the size of the fine," Georgina Philippou, acting director of enforcement and market oversight at the FCA, said.

Clydesdale is the third bank to be fined for failings in its complaint handling procedures.

"We deeply regret any instance which led to the Financial Ombudsman Service receiving incorrect or incomplete information from us. "These practices were not authorised or condoned by the bank," acting ceo Debbie Crosbie said.

Irish Independent

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