A financial services company has managed to get under your skin in the worst possible way and they haven’t resolved your complaint. Rather than resorting to angry outbursts on social media or making their staff bear the brunt of your anger, why not escalate your complaint to the next level?
There are a plethora of ombudsman offices in South Africa, each of which specialises in complaints related to a specific industry or sector. Note that you have to give the financial services company involved a chance to resolve your complaint before you take it to the relevant ombud’s office. The services of each ombud are free of charge. Here are the options available to you:
Noluntu Bam: deals with all complaints related to financial advisers. However, the ombud is limited to dealing with complaints that relate to incidents after 30 September 2004 and can only award complainants a maximum of R800 000. For example, if an adviser fails to inform you how much his fee will cost or invests your money in a property syndication without carrying out a due diligence first, you can complain to the FAIS ombud.
Telephone: +27 12 470 9080
Judge Ron McLaren: deals with all complaints related to life insurance, dread disease cover, income protection cover, funeral policies and hospital cash plans. For example, typical complaints include cases where insurers did not provide policyholders with sufficient information regarding the terms and conditions of their policy or under what circumstances the policy will pay out.
Tel: 021 657 5000 or 0860 103 236
Sharecall: 0860 662 837
Dennis Jooste: deals with insurance complaints related to household contents and building cover, vehicle insurance, cellphones, travel and credit protection insurance. For example, a claim may relate to a declined claim where the policyholder feels that the claim should have been paid out.
Tel: 011 726 8900
Sharecall: 0860 726 890
Manie van Schalkwyk: handles all complaints related to your credit profile, for example, if the information on your credit profile is incorrect.
Tel: 0861 ombuds or 0861 662 837
Muvhango Lukhaimane: investigates all complaints related to pension funds including retirement annuities, pension funds and provident funds. For example, a complaint could relate to the split of a couple’s pension fund interest on divorce.
Tel: 012 346 1738 or 012 748 4000
So, regardless of your complaint, there is an ombud available to help you. When you log a complaint, it helps to take all the emotion out of the complaint and provide a chronological account of events. Make sure that you include as much relevant information as possible, such as policy numbers and your date of birth.