Advertisement

We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Bill Prazifka, Financial Services Ombudsman, speaking to RTÉ's Prime Time last night. RTE Player
Banking Sector

Financial Services Ombudsman reveals backlog of 3,500 complaints

The watchdog is struggling to keep up with the volume of complaints as a result of the economic crisis.

THE FINANCIAL SERVICES OMBUDSMAN has revealed that his office is still trying to work through a backlog of 3,500 complaints made by the public against the country’s financial institutions.

Ombudsman Bill Prasifka told last night’s RTÉ Prime Time that his office had received 3,600 complaints in the first six months of the year, a record number in the history of his office.

While the backlog was not getting any bigger, Prasifka said his office was only just able to keep up with its deband, saying that while the backlog was not getting any bigger, his office was only staffed to “pre-crisis” levels when the volume of calls was smaller.

Similarly, his budget had not been increased in light of the extra volume of calls, saying his office would aim to do “more with less”.

The Irish Examiner reports that the FSO is currently staffed by about 30 people, and deals with complaints from customers who claim to have been treated unfairly by banks, insurance companies, credit unions, brokers, moneylenders, bureaux de change and hire purchase providers.

Prasifka took up the office of Financial Service Ombudsman earlier this year, following the retirement of Joe Meade in January. Prasifka, who was announced as taking the position in February, had previously worked as the aviation regulator.

Where a complaint made to the FSO is upheld, compensation of up to €250,000 can be awarded.

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.