In response to the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) announcement, Dame Gillian Guy, Chief Executive of Citizens Advice, said:
“It’s nearly two years since we submitted a super-complaint on the loyalty penalty and we’re pleased to see the FCA is proposing strong action to crack down on this systematic scam.
“We’re especially happy to see it tackling price-walking – gradual year-on-year price increases – and making companies automatically switch their customers to better deals.
“It’s important to remember these are proposals and have an introduction date of late 2021 which is a long way away. It is essential that the FCA confirm and implement these quickly to potentially bring insurance customers’ prices down by £370 million a year.”
Citizens Advice submitted a super complaint on the loyalty penalty – in the mobile, broadband, home insurance, mortgages and savings markets – to the CMA in September 2018 calling for it to consider how the problem can be fixed. The CMA’s response to the super complaint, in December 2018, said it agreed and had found damaging practices by firms which exploit unsuspecting customers. The CMA said it wanted to see urgent action.
In April last year the charity found that home insurance companies make 100% of their profits from the loyalty penalty.
This is the fourth super complaint Citizens Advice has made since being given the power in 2002. Its super-complaint on payment protection insurance (PPI) in 2005 helped to generate a huge win for consumers, with at least £38 billion returned to customers in refunds and compensation so far.