Claims Standards Council slams founders of rival trade association

The Claims Standards Council has hit out at new rival The Association of Professional Claims Managers, accusing its founders of having a vested interest.

The APCM is being spearheaded by Brunel Franklin, Gladstone Brookes, We Claim U Gain, Financial Recovery Solutions and Synergy Financial Solutions.

The founding companies say the aim of the association is to increase the professionalism and service of regulated financial claims management firms.

But Andrew Wigmore, policy director at the CSC, claims the firms have formed their own association because they do not support the protocol that the CSC is agreeing with banks.
He says: “The firms have a vested interest and want to create their own rules.”

The CSC has been working on a set of protocols that claims firms can sign up to when dealing with banks and payment protection insurance mis-selling claims, and which aim to speed up cases. But it contains rules on the fees and practices firms must abide by.

Wigmore adds: “A lot of firms think we are erring on the side of caution and siding with the banks.”

He says the body regards itself as a second watchdog for the industry, behind the Ministry of Justice, but adds that many firms do not always agree with its hardline approach.

The APCM has also created a code of practice.

Sally Bowyer, managing director of Brunel Franklin and one of the founder members of the APCM, says: “We’ve drawn together what we consider to be some of the most professional and ethical players in the sector and can offer a new level of professional conduct and confidence to consumers looking to employ the services of a financial claims management firm.”

Adherence to the APCM’s code will be assessed through an annual audit.