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Reclaim PPI for free

Claim £1,000s for mis-selling with time-bar looming

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Sam D and Helen S | Edited by Martin

Updated July 2017

clock minutes to midnight

You don't need to pay anyone to reclaim Payment Protection Insurance: we have a free PPI reclaiming tool so you can DIY at no cost. While the reclaiming deadline's been set as 29 Aug 2019, the regulator will push big money into publicising this - and likely jam up the reclaiming system. Doing it NOW gets you ahead of the queue.

So this is an urgent clarion call to anyone who's ever had a loan, credit or store card, catalogue account, overdraft or car finance: you need to urgently check if you were flogged worthless PPI. This full detailed guide will help you through it, including what to do if you've no paperwork and what counts as mis-selling.

This is the latest incarnation of our PPI guide. Please let us know how you found it, and if the information worked for you in this article's forum discussion.

case study of a reclaim

PPI reclaiming: The nine need-to-knows

PPI was an insurance policy sold (or forced upon you) when you got a loan, credit or store card, catalogue account, overdraft or car finance

PPI stands for 'Payment Protection Insurance'. It's designed to cover your loan or credit card repayments for a year in the event of an accident, sickness or, in some cases, unemployment.

In itself, it isn't a bad product. But it's been widely mis-sold, leaving many paying thousands for potentially worthless cover – and you could even have it without knowing (see the Mis-selling Checklist). Sales staff were hugely incentivised to sell PPI whenever possible – and much of the insurance went on huge commissions.

Many were under so much pressure, they strayed far from the truth. The sellers were often trusted financial institutions, so sadly, many were left with mis-sold PPI. The mis-selling's scale has meant that many have no idea how much they're owed – and are often staggered by the sums they get back.

A huge thank you for encouraging us to claim. We used your guide and received £22,000 for the PPI from our bank! - Jeff

Think this doesn't apply to you? Don't. We've heard from thousands of people who have reclaimed who thought it wasn't them – take five minutes to check.

And if you've never tried before and don't think this affects you, you're possibly wrong. One of the ways PPI was mis-sold was by being added without you being told. Take this case study from John for inspiration...

I took your advice and have claimed PPI from all the companies we had loans with. The result has been overwhelming: approximately £19,000 back... thank you. - John

Quick questions

When did PPI mis-selling start?

Why was PPI mis-sold?

Why is reclaiming possible?

newspaper headlines

The deadline's been set for 29 August 2019 but act ASAP to beat the queue

The Financial Conduct Authority has confirmed that the deadline for making a claim will be 29 August 2019. This means if you've got a mis-selling claim over how PPI was sold, it MUST be received by the firm you're complaining to on or by 29 August 2019. Miss it, and the complaint won't be considered.

We've campaigned against this deadline but it's happening – and while it is far away, once the regulator starts advertising the deadline in August, there's likely to be an enormous number of people stampeding to do it. Plus, the FCA also confirmed new rules surrounding what's known as Plevin which means millions more could be caught in PPI's web. They will also be claiming by the deadline, so act now.

Now just having had PPI means most were mis-sold. Over £20 billion has already been repaid but it's just a fraction of what may be owed to consumers.

Want to listen to Martin explain it all? Here he is on BBC5live…

Quick questions

What does the new deadline mean?

Is everybody limited by the 29 August 2019 deadline?

What happens to vulnerable people, will they have to stick to the deadline too?

Deadline? We don't agree with it.

If you don't know if you had PPI, who your lender was, are missing info or lack paperwork, don't worry – it's easy to find out

man with question markLots of people worry about reclaiming PPI because they don't have full details or can't remember, but don't let this put you off. Here's what you need to do...

  • Don't know if you even took out PPI? Check your credit files

    Don't feel silly if you don't know – this is the number one question we get, full stop. First, you can try finding out by going back through all your old loan and mortgage statements and checking for any mention of an insurance fee or product to cover your payments if you lost your job through accident, sickness or unemployment.

    Look for something that may be called 'payment cover', 'protection plan', 'ASU', 'loan protection', 'retail payment protection', 'loan care' or similar.

    If you don't have those documents or simply cannot remember which lenders you've borrowed from in the past, don't worry – you can check your credit report. It lists any loans, mortgages or other debts that were live within the last six years, even if they're now closed. You can see all this and check your credit report for free at our MSE Credit Club.

    Don't think it's unlikely – take the following success as a brilliant example:

    We honestly believed we had never had PPI and ignored all your suggestions to check. Until... we saw you say that even if we didn't think we had, we should phone to check. Now it turns out we had three policies over the past 20 years and have recently had almost £5,000 back. Thank you, thank you, thank you! - K.H

  • Think you had PPI and know the lender but don't have the paperwork? Contact 'em for details

    If you've thrown away your paperwork, don't panic: there's a way to get hold of it. If you don't have a copy of your agreement or T&Cs you can contact your lender to ask for a copy (make sure the T&Cs date back to the time of your agreement, as terms will change over time).

    What to ask depends on whether your account is still open or is closed. Here are template letters to send off to ask your bank.

    Is your account still open? Here, lenders can ask for £1 to provide a copy of your agreement but not all do so. You could include a £1 cheque (don't send cash, though) to speed it up a little.

    Is your account now closed? You can ask for a full breakdown of your whole account, specifically including the insurance. If it takes longer than 40 days, report it to the Information Commissioner. This breakdown can cost £10 so you could include a £10 cheque (not cash).

    OPEN account CLOSED account

    Broken piggy bank with cash spilling out

  • Got your old bank paperwork but not sure if you had PPI? Call 'em to ask

    The easiest way to check is to contact your lender. Most will be able to tell you whether you've had PPI, either now or at some point in the past. For example, Nationwide has an enquiry form you can complete online to find out.

    See contact details for the main banks

    If this doesn't work, what's needed is likely to depend on how old your policy is. Some lenders only need a name and address (remember to let it know if yours has changed), others may need more details.

    It may be easier if you have the original agreement and terms. Under the Data Protection Act, if your account's still open, you've a legal right to get your agreement from the lender for £1.

    If your account's closed and the lender can't find your PPI policy terms, it'll be harder to process your complaint. Contact your provider with as much detail as you can, or ask for a full breakdown of your account. It can cost £10 to get this.

Quick questions

I've asked but my bank says I didn't have PPI. Is there another way to check?

My bank conversations were verbal/I've no other evidence, help!

There's NO time limit on how far back you can go to make a PPI claim; the only problem may be the paperwork

You can complain about a product sold at any time though here are some guidelines which may help. It's easier if your insurance was active in the last six years, but don't let this put you off.

  • Insurance started in the last six years: There's no issue here at all as you can request information from the lenders going back six years. Even if the loan's now paid off, you can start a reclaim.

  • Older insurance that's still active, or ended within the last six years: You can start a reclaim. The six-year rule applies to active insurance, so a policy taken out 12 years ago but paid off five years ago was still active within the key six-year period.

  • If your policy ended over six years ago: The 'statute of limitations' means banks don't need to keep records that are over six years old. However, there is no official cut-off time so if you've still got the paperwork – while your chances of success are a little lower with older loans – many still do successfully reclaim.

We've had many successes going back to the early 1990s:

I wrote to my bank about several loans I'd had with them since 1998. I got a letter back offering me just under £13,000 compensation for mis-sold PPI, very quick turnaround as well, money was in my account in less than a week from sending the agreement back! - C.S

Just received £705 in an answer for a PPI claim from February 1990... that's 26 years ago! I was checking paperwork for my wife when I found the original loan agreement from 1990. The moral of the story? Never throw away old bank statements. - Mr A.W

Quick questions

Can I reclaim if I'm still paying off the loan?

Can I reclaim if the loan's repaid and I'm no longer a customer?

How much might I get back?

Will reclaiming PPI hit my credit rating?

Can I make more than one PPI complaint?

I've already reclaimed bank charges, can I still reclaim PPI?

Will I have to pay tax on any claim refund?

Now, due to Plevin, even just having PPI means most were mis-sold

A whole new route has opened up for millions of people who either didn't think they had been mis-sold PPI or who have had claims rejected.

In 2014, a court ruling held that customer Susan Plevin was treated unfairly because she wasn't told about the large amount of commission (71.8%) taken from her PPI payment. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has now confirmed that from 29 August this year this can be used as a new reason to claim for compensation.

The Plevin rules mean if over 50% of your PPI’s cost went as commission to the lender, and that wasn’t explained to you, you are due back the extra above that. For this to count your PPI had to still be active at some point since 2008.

Staggeringly, with loan PPI, on average 67% of what you paid was pocketed by banks as commission from insurers, and banks almost never mentioned it - so millions more people are owed possibly billions more pounds. On a £10,000 loan over 5 years, your 'Plevin' compensation would typically be £500.

Here's a quick timeline...

  • March 2017 Regulator tells banks to start preparing for Plevin complaint rules.You can put in a Plevin complaint now, and we're working on a Plevin-only complaint letter to include on our free tool - sign up for our free weekly email and we'll let you know immediately when it's ready.

  • 29 August 2017 From this point, banks must consider a straightforward Plevin complaint case from consumers. They must also automatically consider Plevin as part of any other PPI mis-selling complaint too - even if it's not mentioned. The FCA will also start publicising the August 2019 deadline with advertising campaigns.

  • Aug - Nov 2017 Banks should be sending out a letter to two types of consumer: the 1.2 million who were previously rejected for a PPI-mis-selling complaint, and anyone who has a mis-selling claim currently in process (or who makes one between now and August 2017) - so-called back cases. This letter must explain about Plevin and the processes of a claim.

  • 29 November 2017 All the above types of PPI mis-selling consumers must have been contacted by the end of the month at the latest.

  • 29 August 2019 All PPI mis-selling complaints and Plevin complaints to have been made to the relevant banks/firms, barring the few exceptions already mentioned.
Quick questions...

If I think I can claim under Plevin, do I need to wait?

Can everyone claim under the new Plevin rule?

What if I've been previously rejected for a PPI claim?

What do I do if I've currently got a PPI mis-selling claim in process?

I think I've got a (non-Plevin) PPI mis-selling claim: should I wait until Plevin comes in so it's also considered?

I've had a previous payout from a successful PPI-mis-selling claim. Will I get a second payment, a so-called 'double dip'?

And how much am I likely to get back?

PPI reclaim been rejected? If you believe you were mis-sold, try AGAIN

The PPI story is always changing and we hear new stories of bad practice all the time – many banks have been fined for fobbing customers off and shoddy handling of their complaints.

-Rejected in the last six months? If so, you've got a right to take your case straight to the Ombudsman. Follow the steps below to carry on.

credit union

-Been rejected but MORE than six months ago? If it's been more than six months since your complaint was rejected and you didn't go to the Ombudsman, you may find it might not be as easy so what you'll have to do is restart your claim - unless, for example, a severe illness may have prevented you from being able to write to the Ombudsman or you couldn't find original documents as part of a claim - and later found some.

So, for most, your only choice is to restart your case. Whether you're allowed to do that or not is complicated - generally, as stated above, you'll need a major reason why you didn't - but the Plevin case (see point 5) may help you here. If you're not sure whether you can restart, the best thing to do is call the Ombudsman helpline on 0300 123 9123.

Don't give up - the fact you were rejected in the past does NOT mean you weren't mis-sold.

Quick questions

I was turned down by the Ombudsman a few years ago; can I try again?

If I've already claimed on my PPI, can I still make a mis-selling complaint?

You can still reclaim if your lender/broker has been taken over or gone bust

Don't be put off if this is the case. Original lender taken over? When buying another company, new owners are usually liable for its debts and for paying customers.

Sometimes the liability stays with the old provider, but complain to the new firm and it'll let you know if that's the case. As an example, Egg's credit cards have now been taken over by Barclaycard, so Barclaycard's liable for Egg's past PPI mis-selling.

If your lender's gone bust and you were mis-sold, you'll need to contact the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (the lender must have been FSA/FCA-regulated for you to do this). This is the official body which insures the liabilities of finance companies are met. See Safe Savings for more info – the process is very similar.

Following your tips I claimed PPI against an old protection policy pushed by a now defunct provider – a 'mean to' job which took me months to get around to. About three hours' work resulted in a £4,000 return which included refund of premiums plus interest. Enough to say yes to a family wedding invitation to Florida. - Mr C.G

Quick questions

My financial adviser/broker sold me another lender's PPI. Who do I contact?

My lender was based in Jersey. Can I reclaim?

My debt's been passed to a collection agency. Who do I contact to reclaim?

I've had a debt management plan / IVA / been bankrupt, can I reclaim?

You CAN reclaim PPI for a deceased relative or if you live abroad

Many families only discover a parent or family member had taken out PPI when they die, during the onerous task of sorting through paperwork and their affairs – but their death doesn't mean the end of the compensation they're owed.

Any monies owed become part of their estate, so the person who inherits is entitled to reclaim (let the executor know too). If there's no will this follows the rules of intestacy; see Yet it's worth noting there may be problems proving what happened at the time of the sale if only the policyholder was present.

And if you live overseas, the fact you now live abroad is neither here nor there – you can reclaim. See the Mis-selling Checklist to find out if you were mis-sold.

I found several old loan statements showing PPI in my late husband's paperwork. The loan company no longer exists so I had to google the parent company for an address. Then, six weeks later, the bank behind it wrote back saying they would be paying me £33,000 as PPI repayment accrued interest! Thank you a million times. - Mrs M. Cork

Quick questions

I had a joint loan with my partner but we're now divorced, does this affect my case?

I've still got the PPI. Will they cancel it if I reclaim?

I wasn't stupid enough to get PPI, what do I get back?

You do NOT need to pay a company to reclaim PPI for you

Boxer uppercut

How loudly can I say this? You do NOT need to pay, no way, absolutely not, never! (Well almost never, which I'll come to very shortly.)

Companies known as claims handlers do very little that we don't already do for you below in our new reclaiming tool. They usually take about 25% of the proceeds, plus VAT, yet it's easy to do yourself. Many people give away £1,000s unnecessarily when they could keep all the reclaimed cash themselves.

Just got a PPI payout this week – £1,800 going back over 10 years – and I did it all on my own without having to pay someone else. It was so easy. - Ms L.G

If you're thinking it'll simply be easier to use a claims company, don't: you're still going to have to provide them with the same information you put in the form here. However, in certain circumstances – see below – you should go ahead and do it.

Quick questions

What are the circumstances when it'll be worth using a claims company?

I get unwanted cold calls and texts from PPI companies, how can I make them stop?

A company's kept my initial fee after I pulled out, help!

I'm using a claims handler but I'm not happy, what can I do?

The claims company says I've a better chance if I use it. Is this true?

How do I know if a claims handler's any good?

The Mis-selling Checklist: How do YOU know if it was mis-sold?

Don't start this thinking 'Do I have evidence?' Instead, ask yourself 'Did this happen to me?' and if it did, the likelihood is it happened to other people.

The way providers decide, based on the balance of evidence they've got, is 'Was this likely to be correct?' All you need do is answer the question about whether it happened to you, NOT 'Can I prove it happened to me?'

All policies will have exclusions, and you should've been told about them. As most policies are bought alongside a financial product rather than on their own, the key issue is:

...what was said at the point you were sold the product.

Here are the key mis-selling categories in our checklist. If you fit one or more of these, you probably have a case:

A. Were you told it was compulsory?

blue questions mark

It's a common complaint that consumers are told they must buy a policy from the same provider as the loan to be accepted for the product. This is mis-selling.

If this applies to you, read the full 'I was told to have it' briefing

B. Didn't realise you had cover?

green question mark

Too many people have told us of their surprise and shock to discover they have been paying PPI premiums for years – and are stumped as to why. Yet there are many ways it was mis-sold to you without your knowledge...

If this applies to you, read the full 'I had no idea I had it' briefing

C. Were you told or sold the wrong thing?

pink question mark

This covers anything from the fact you were already covered through work or your partner, the policy was not what you agreed to, the insurance term was shorter than your loan and you didn't realise, or if you thought it was a joint policy but in fact it was only in one person's name.

If this applies to you, read our full general mis-selling briefing

D. Self-employed, unemployed or retired?

ocean question mark

If you were unemployed or retired when you were sold the policy, check if it included unemployment cover. If it did, the unemployment cover's worthless – this should've been pointed out.

If you were self-employed at the time, check whether you were eligible for a payout if your business went bust (usually not) – if not, and it wasn't pointed out, you may have a case.

If this applies to you, read our full mis-sold unemployment cover briefing

E. Had any medical problems in the past?

red question mark

Most policies exclude existing medical conditions, meaning you're unlikely to be covered for any medical problems you've had in the past. You should've been asked about this, and informed the policy could be affected.

If this applies to you, read our full pre-existing medical conditions briefing

F. Has your provider already been fined?

blue questions mark

The regulator has said it wants to see better practice. Many major providers, including Lloyds, LV and Capital One, have been fined for "not treating customers fairly". If yours has, it's very likely you've a case.

If this applies to you, read our full list of fined providers

G. Undisclosed commission: the Plevin case

blue questions mark

The regulator has just announced new grounds to make a complaint about a PPI policy based on the Plevin case. Technically, this isn't mis-selling - it's a breach of rules regarding fairness relating to the Consumer Credit Act - but the effect is the same.

The Financial Conduct Authority says firms should generally consider a complaint on the grounds of an unfair relationship between lender and borrower if commission was above 50%. With PPI sales, typical commission stood at 67% so most people who took out PPI are likely owed.

Although the rules aren't due to come in until 29 August 2017, you can write to your bank or lender now to lodge a complaint.

If this applies to you, read our Plevin briefing

Free PPI reclaiming tool

Warning! While every effort's been made to ensure this article's accuracy, it doesn't constitute legal advice and you act on it at your own risk.

Passengers should claim compensationOK, if you're here, we reckon you're ready to make a claim! However, we're making two big assumptions. In particular, that:

  • You know all about your PPI, who the lender was, what policy you had and when – if not, see need-to-knows 3 and 4 above.

  • You know what the reason is for the mis-selling – if not, see the Mis-selling Checklist above.

But if you've got all the information above – or as much of it as you can – then you're ready to go...

Free PPI reclaiming tool from MoneySavingExpert

Our free online tool helps draft a letter (which you can alter before sending), sends it, tells you when you've a response, keeps track of your complaint and escalates it all the way up to the Ombudsman if necessary.

We do this using the complaints firm Resolver, which provides the technology, but the underlying template letters and logic behind it are ours. We're working with Resolver on many projects to combine our expertise on how to complain with its cutting-edge technology.

Plevin-only cases. If you're reclaiming due to Plevin we don't currently have a template for this because it doesn't start until 29 August 2017 - but we will be adding it and will let you know in the weekly email. But banks will have to consider Plevin anyway if you're doing a general mis-selling claim, and we'll be reviewing our letters over the next few weeks to address this.

Choose the bank or PPI provider you were mis-sold by in the dropdown below:

All you need is your account number, the reason you think you were mis-sold (see The mis-selling checklist above) and the date you took out the product, plus copies of any of your statements or other relevant documents (Resolver lets you attach these before sending off the complaint).

  • What if the bank / PPI provider says no? If your complaint's rejected or you don't hear back, after eight weeks Resolver will prompt you to escalate it to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
  • Can't find your bank? We've covered the big accounts, but if you can't find yours, Resolver says accounts can be added to the tool if you alert it via its website. If you don't want to wait, you'll need to complain directly using our template letters.
  • Unhappy with Resolver? We don't have a lot of feedback on Resolver so far. Read past feedback and leave your own on our Resolver forum thread. For more on how we work with Resolver see our full Resolver guide.

Alternatively, use our free template letters

We've put all our information into Resolver and believe that's the easiest and best way to do it. However, if for some reason you decide you don't want to use the tool, we have template letters that you can either use or use as guidance to call the firm and ask for a refund.

In the old days this often meant following a protracted dance – thankfully, it's much easier now. It's sometimes possible to deal with your whole complaint by phone. Use the information in the templates to guide your conversation.

How to do it: Fill in the templates

Help as your case progresses

Whether you apply using our new free tool or the templates, it's crucial that you keep a close eye on the progress of your complaint. These are the key stages you must keep track of, and take action once you reach each one.

Received an offer from your bank? Make sure it's fair

At this stage you could hear back from your bank with an offer to refund your PPI premiums. Some that offer letters may also include a leaflet from MSE and Which? to help you check your PPI offer is fair, and know your rights if you feel it isn't.

Here's a copy of the leaflet – let us know if you received it and whether you found it useful in the MSE Forum. But wait... before you jump for joy, be sure you've received the full sum you're entitled to...

Did your bank underpay you?

Rejected by your bank instead? Carry on to the Ombudsman

An ode to remember: Write to the ombudsman

If you're rejected during the reclaim stage using our Resolver tool, you'll automatically receive a trigger reminder to take your complaint to the Ombudsman. There'll be a few brief details to fill in and then our tool will send on the details of your original complaint to the Ombudsman. Otherwise, if you're using our template letters, it'll be up to you to escalate it.

FOSThe Ombudsman is the official, independent service for settling disputes between financial companies and their customers. It is completely free to use, and will adjudicate on whether your complaint should be paid out.

It'll decide whether your policy was sold unfairly or unreasonably (see some examples). It can only do so once eight weeks have passed from the date of your first complaint letter, unless your bank sends a final letter within the eight-week period.

While the process of using the Ombudsman PPI claim form is simple, and the amount of money you could receive is massive, it's not usually quick. Your case may take a couple of years to be settled, so don't count on the cash now.

How to make a complaint to the Ombudsman

Quick questions

I'm still waiting on the Ombudsman, how long will it take?

My bank agreed to refund PPI but I'm still waiting, can I speed things up?

Can a PPI refund be taken to pay debts, eg, an overdraft / loan?

I've been offered a goodwill payment. What does this mean, and can I get more?

I accepted a goodwill offer from my lender, can I reclaim more?

I've received two payments – is the interest paid separately?

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