In 2008 Egg were fined £721,000 for mis-selling payment protection insurance. The fine related to telephone sales of the cover between January 2005 and December 2007 with around 40% of those sales exhibiting some kind of failure in the sales process. The fine was handed out by The Financial Services Authority (FSA) who led a widespread investigation into the selling of payment protection insurance across the UK lending industry. The FSA were particularly critical of a technique called ‘objection handling’ used by the company. ‘Objection handling’ involved continuing to try and persuade a customer to take out cover after they refused. Staff were also found to have over-emphasised positive features of the cover. Following the FSA investigation PPI Egg telephone sales were stopped.
The FSA investigation and fine followed several turbulent years for Egg and the rest of the credit card industry. In 2006 another investigation, this one led by The Office of Fair Trading (OFT), criticised the charges applied by credit card companies for late payments and over the limit fees. It was found that some lenders were charging up to £35 for these infringements and many consumer groups claimed they were penalising the most financially vulnerable. In their subsequent report, the OFT suggested that a maximum charge for over the limit fees and late payments on credit cards should be £12. This figure took into consideration the cost of administrating accounts and postage as well as some contribution to IT systems.
Since the OFT investigation, most lenders have reduced their over the limit and late payment fees, but many customers still feel angry they were forced to pay charges for years that have now been deemed unfair. The good news is, if you have paid unfair credit card charges in the past you may now be able to make a claim.
If you would like to make a mis-sold PPI Egg claim or PPI claims against any other lender call our team on 0207 471 2000. We can also help you with claiming back bank charges.
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