Ireland: Changes To Financial Services Regulation

Two new pieces of legislation, which have recently been signed into law by the President, change the landscape of consumer complaints and make important changes to the offices of the Financial Services Ombudsman ("FSO") and the Pensions Ombudsman.

Central Bank and Financial Services Authority of Ireland (Amendment) Act 2017

The Central Bank and Financial Services Authority of Ireland (Amendment) Act 2017 (the "Amendment Act") was a private members bill which was signed by the President on 25 July 2017.

The Amendment Act has retrospectively amended the 6 year limitation period for certain types of complaints. Individuals who have previously had complaints to the FSO declined because of the date of the conduct complained of may now be able to re-submit complaints relating to "long-term financial services" (considered in more detail below).

Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman Act 2017

The Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman Act 2017 (the "FSPO Act") was a government bill which was signed into law by the President on 26 July 2017. The FSPO Act has not yet been commenced by the Minister, but when it comes into force, it will, in effect, replace and supersede the Amendment Act.

The FSPO Act is of greater significance than the Amendment Act as it amends, updates and consolidates legislation underpinning the Financial Services Ombudsman and the Pensions Ombudsman, amalgamating both offices to establish the Office of the Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman.

Of particular note is the extension of time limits for making certain complaints i.e. those relating to a "long-term financial service" and broadening the categories of individuals who may be subject to the Ombudsman's compulsory information gathering powers, when investigating complaints about a financial service provider.

Long Term Financial Services

The Amendment Act and the FSPO Act have introduced the concept of "long-term financial service".

A "long-term financial service" means a financial service the duration of which is a fixed term of 5 years and one month or more and also life assurance policies. The definition does not extend to a series of consecutive terms in respect of a financial service's duration (provided no individual one of them is 5 years and one month, or more, in length).

Time Limits for Complaints under the FSPO Act

Under section 51 of the FSPO Act, complaints in respect of long-term financial services can now be made. Previously a consumer was not entitled to bring a complaint about a financial service if the conduct complained of occurred more than six years before the complaint was made. However under the FSPO Act and the Amendment Act, consumers can now bring complaints outside of this period if their complaint relates to a long-term financial service.

In order to benefit from the new time limits, the conduct complained of must have occurred during or after 2002, and the financial service concerned must not have terminated more than 6 years before the date of the complaint.

The Six Year Rule

A core element of both pieces of legislation is the "six-year rule". Complaints can be made either six years from the date of the conduct giving rise to the complaint, or three years from the earlier of the following two dates. The first is the date on which the person making the complaint first becomes aware of the conduct and the second is the date on which that person ought reasonably to have become aware of the conduct. The Ombudsman may extend the time frame for making complaints beyond these periods where there are reasonable grounds and it would be just and equitable in all the circumstances to do so.

Powers of the Ombudsman

Under the FSPO Act the Ombudsman may require "any person" whom he/she believes has information or documentation that is relevant to an investigation to provide it to the Ombudsman, or to summon "any person" to attend before the Ombudsman to give evidence. The FSO's compulsory powers currently only permit information or documents to be compelled from a regulated entity or an associated entity of the regulated entity and to compel officers, members, agents or employees of the regulated entity to attend before the FSO to give evidence. Therefore under the FSPO Act the categories of individuals in respect of whom compulsory information gathering powers may be used has been significantly broadened.

Time Limits for Appeals

Under both the Amendment Act and the FSPO Act the time limit for appealing the Ombudsman's findings have been extended. An individual now has thirty five days after being notified of the finding to appeal it. Discretion is given to the High Court to extend the appeal time frame if it would be just and equitable to do so.

The previous time frame for lodging an appeal to the High Court was twenty one days.

Comment

The extension of the types of complaints available to consumers is something to which financial service providers need to take note. Of particular importance are the provisions which extend the time limits for making complaints.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
 
In association with
Related Topics
 
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Related Articles
 
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Position
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Compliance
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Registration (you must scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.

Disclaimer

The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.

General

Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions