In this guide
9. Treating Customers Fairly
Treating Customers Fairly (TCF) is a requirement of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). It is a set of principles expressed as ‘consumer outcomes’ which FCA-authorised firms should strive to achieve to ensure fair treatment of customers:
- Consumers can be confident they are dealing with firms where the fair treatment of customers is central to the corporate culture.
- Products and services marketed and sold in the retail market are designed to meet the needs of identified consumer groups and are targeted accordingly.
- Consumers are provided with clear information and are kept appropriately informed before, during and after the point of sale.
- Where consumers receive advice, the advice is suitable and takes account of their circumstances.
- Consumers are provided with products that perform as firms have led them to expect, and the associated service is of an acceptable standard and as they have been led to expect.
- Consumers do not face unreasonable post-sale barriers imposed by firms to change product, provider, submit a claim or make a complaint.
- Our senior managers must establish and maintain a culture of fairness throughout the organisation.
- Our staff must take all reasonable steps to understand the customer’s needs.
- TCF is about considering the interests of customers in all our activities.
- Our senior managers must consider TCF management information and anything else it considers necessary on a regular and reasonably frequent basis in order to satisfy themselves that TCF is and remains embedded in everyday activities.
- It is not necessary to treat customers equally in order to treat them fairly. In some cases, unequal treatment would be unfair; in others it would be fair, e.g. where a vulnerable customer with mental capacity limitations is provided with more time to think about financial decisions.
What it means to you
We seek to apply the following approaches as means of meeting the good customer outcomes:
- Keep things simple - Communicate clearly and explain things in plain English. Help ensure borrowers understand their obligations.
- Keep things easy - Provide borrowers with a named contact at each stage of an application. Contact borrowers at a time to suit them. Provide regular updates.
- Keep things personal - Treat each borrower as an individual. Offer borrowers a choice of options based on their individual circumstances.
- Keep things open - Listen to borrowers’ views. Answer any questions honestly. Deal with any problems quickly and fairly.
- Keep things professional - Treat borrowers with courtesy and respect. Observe the highest standards of integrity and professional standards.
If you feel we have not met these outcomes and have treated, you unfairly then please let us know. You can find out further details on our Customer information: Complaints sheet.