Media comment: FCA Consumer Vulnerability paper

Monday 23 February 2015

Today, the FCA published an Occasional Paper which aims to broaden understanding and stimulate interest and debate around vulnerability and to provide practical help and resources to firms in developing and implementing a vulnerability strategy.

Caroline Rookes, Chief Executive for the Money Advice service comments:

“We welcome this important paper by the FCA which raises awareness of the need to treat people fairly. Given the long term nature of many financial commitments such as loans and mortgages, it is important for firms to be able to support people in adapting to the real life events which can impact on their finances.

“Our research shows that people across the UK don’t plan ahead for the major life events which can make them vulnerable. When people do experience financial shocks, many don’t seek advice until they are in crisis. That’s why a key priority for us is to bring together financial services firms, advice charities, regulators and government to ensure that adequate help is available to people across the UK to manage their money day to day, plan ahead and get out of financial difficulties.

“With this in mind, it is encouraging to see the FCA raising awareness of the need for firms and advice organisations to tailor their approach to customers’ circumstances. It is also great to see the FCA calling on firms to provide clear and easy-to-understand products, ensure staff are available to talk to customers about their difficulties and proactively approach consumers who may need help.

“We hope that firms respond positively to the paper.”

For more information, please contact: The Money Advice Service press office on 020 7943 0593 or pressoffice@moneyadviceservice.org.uk