Do you know what an ombudsman is and how they seek to project consumers again businesses? If your answer is no, then don’t worry! That’s why we are here, to provide information and clarification on the complex and sometimes confusing world of the finance and business sectors. Ombudsman services play a vital role in safeguarding the interests of consumers. Where financial claims are concerned, these organisations are commonly involved.
Keep reading to find out what an ombudsman is and to see some of the most common services that you will usually come across in relation to finance and business…
What Is an Ombudsman?
So to answer your first question, what exactly is an ombudsman? An ombudsman is an official body that investigates complaints made by a private citizen. They are there to protect the best interests of consumers by investigating complaints, attempting to resolve conflicts or addressing any concerns that have been raised.
An ombudsman is often appointed by the government to ensure a fair and proper complaints procedure is in place across multiple sectors. They will usually be brought in when a person has a complaint to make against a public organisation, such as a business, university, government department, or a financial institution. It’s essential that such services are independent and reach decisions based on impartiality. An ombudsman is free to use.
Common Ombudsman Services
Ombudsman services are not tied to any particular industry but can be found across a variety of sectors, even ones that you may find obscure and unusual. We have rounded up a list of some of the United Kingdom’s most common ombudsman services below.
- Financial Ombudsman Service – This ombudsman service is the most relevant to our work as it covers the financial sector. The Financial Ombudsman Service aims to resolve complaints made by consumers against financial businesses or claims management companies. It covers personal finance, insurance, pensions, bank accounts, and investments.
- The Motor Ombudsman – This ombudsman service deals with complaints in the automotive sector, including the sales, servicing and repairs of motor vehicles.
- The Property Ombudsman – This service focuses on the property industry, helping to settle complaints and resolve disputes between consumers and property agents.
- The Pensions Ombudsman – While complaints on pensions can also be dealt with by the Financial Ombudsman Service, this service specifically deals with pensions.
- The Rail Ombudsman – As the name clearly shows, this service aims to resolve complaints made within the train and rail industry.
- Ombudsman Services – This ombudsman service covers the Energy and Communications sectors. Appointed by Ofgem, the government’s regulator for gas and electricity, the service handles complaints made against energy suppliers and networks.
- Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman – This ombudsman covers complaints that have been made against UK government departments, NHS England or other public bodies.
Please note that this is just a short summary of some of the most common and relevant ombudsman services concerning financial and consumer claims. For a more thorough list, you can visit the Ombudsman Association website. The Ombudsman Association is a professional membership body that consists of several public and private sector ombudsman schemes and complaint handling bodies.
We hope that this article has provided you with useful information regarding what an ombudsman is and the various services that you may be impacted by. Should you have any questions or require more information, please don’t hesitate to contact us and a member of our team will happily talk you through what they know.