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+44 (0) 20 7330 8810

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+44 (0) 191 236 2709

Write to us

Credit Services Association

2 Esh Plaza

Sir Bobby Robson Way

Great Park

Newcastle Upon Tyne

NE13 9BA

Additional Sections

Complaints Procedure

Useful Links

Making a complaint

We work hard to ensure our Members act within the rules set by the industry regulators.

Please click on the following link and read our Code of Practice. If you think a Member has broken the rules of this Code you can make a complaint by downloading our Complaints Form.

Before making a complaint we would encourage you to carry out the following activities:

 

  • Go to the Members Directory and check whether the company you wish to complain about is a Member of the CSA. If you are still unsure, feel free to contact us. If the company is a Member of the CSA then we are able to help you with your complaint.
  • On first instance, we recommend you contact the Member company to discuss any issues you have and enquire about their complaints process. If you are still dissatisfied with the outcome then you can review our Complaints Procedure.
  • If you believe that the Member has acted in breach of our Code of Practice and the complaint meets the necessary criteria, please complete, sign and return the Complaint Form to our registered address.

CSA Complaints Procedure

 How we deal with your complaint.

All complaints must be submitted in writing, with a signed complaint form. We require the form to be signed so that we, and our Member, have the requisite authorisation to share information.

The following is the sequence of events after the CSA receive a complaint form;

  • CSA receive a signed complaint form
  • CSA register the complaint and send a copy to the relevant Member company
  • The Member is given four weeks to respond directly to the complainant
  • CSA get a copy of the response from the Member company
  • CSA considers both positions and determines whether the Code of Practice has been breached
  • Appropriate action is taken (if required) to remedy the situation
  • If further information is required the CSA contact the relevant party (the complainant or the Member company).
  • After a full review, the CSA provides a formal response to the complainant

 

If you remain unhappy with the outcome of the complaint, you may have justification to escalate the matter to our our head of compliance, Claire Aynsley, claire.aynsley@csa-uk.com.

 

Please note: The CSA can only intervene when;

  • a Member company is in breach of the Code.
  • the company is a Member of the CSA (we cannot act when the complaint is about the client of a Member company, a bank or building society for example).
  • the information supplied by a Member company appears from the facts to be incorrect.

Methods of Contact

 

Address

Credit Services Association

Complaints Department

2 Esh Plaza

Sir Bobby Robson Way

Newcastle-upon-Tyne

NE13 9BA

 

Why the CSA need a signed copy of your complaint

 

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30-12-2015

Blog: The debt collection sector’s five most important developments of 2015

Peter Wallwork is CEO of the Credit Services Association.

 

2015 has been a year of significant progress and achievement for our industry and much has been achieved in a landscape for debt collection that has changed irrevocably.

Our new-styled annual event - the UK Credit and Collections Conference (UKCCC) - provided a forum for serious debate about the key issues and challenges that have dominated the year and will continue to exercise our minds and judgment in the months ahead. To sum up 2015, we have identified the five key developments that will shape debt collection practices in 2016 and beyond.

  • Reducing stress and hassle for customers

As an industry, we have been looking at practical ways to improve the customer journey this year, with a CSA Working Party dedicated to exploring the Income and Expenditure debate and the opportunity for a one-stop portal to reduce the amount of time that customers spend sharing financial circumstances over the phone.

As the debt collection sector’s UK trade body, we’ve also been a proactive thought leader on issues around working with vulnerable customers in 2015. The debate and challenges around dealing with the most vulnerable in our society has significantly moved on this year, with an acceptance that vulnerability is not something that can easily be defined or measured via a ‘tick box’ exercise. It requires in-depth customer engagement and understanding. In addition to introducing members to the British Standard on Inclusive Service Provision, and sharing the FCA’s Paper No 8 on Consumer Vulnerability, we also made the issue a key theme of our conference and member communications throughout the year.

  • Raising the bar for industry best practice

Our work with industry regulator the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is ongoing and the announcement that debt collection and debt purchase will not directly feature in the FCA Thematic Review, and therefore is not seen as an area of risk, was very welcome. This has prompted a further review of our Code of Practice and a specific Working Party has been established to look at a new Trace Code of Conduct and Principles of Trace. We also have a Working Party dedicated to the development of Best Practice Guidance on the withdrawal of paying portfolios, and recently launched a Model Contract as a benchmark of good practice in drafting contracts in the new regulatory environment.

  • Dispelling myths around debt collection

We are particularly excited about two key pieces of work we are doing collaboratively with the FCA on Affordability and Due Diligence. Both will help us dispel some of the myths which are associated with our sector, provide guidance and clarification where needed and answer questions on some of the grey areas of interpretation. This is an important role for us to play in improving customer and stakeholder engagement for the benefit of all.

  • Ensuring compliance is not at odds with achieving the best customer outcome

We have lobbied for a rethink of two big proposed regulatory challenges this year, after identifying that they would not only adversely affect the way our members do business but also adversely affect customers.

Although there are still areas of concern around the new EU Data Protection Regulation, there is no doubt that the CSA and its partners in Europe have caused the bureaucrats to pause and rethink, and the ultimate outcome will be better informed as a result. We have also ensured that our members have been briefed throughout, and our communications and lobbying recognised with a prestigious industry award.

We also worked with the water industry regulator to rethink its decision to only use FCA regulated debt collection agencies. We highlighted that our ‘unregulated’ members that specialise in the water industry like Orbit Collections, (who are exempt from FCA authorisation because they are not financial services focused), are actually much better placed to work with customers and adhere to the same standards, despite not being obliged to comply. This helped to clear up an otherwise confused picture that could have been detrimental to many customers.

  • Bringing the industry up to speed with the latest standards

Education, knowledge and development has been another key theme of 2015. We continue to offer up-to-the-minute blended learning and development solutions through our Level 2 & Level 3 Diplomas in Debt Collection, a Level 5 Diploma in Compliance Risk Management and also our Collector Accreditation Initiative (CAI) that has recently passed a significant milestone. The number of tests taken has now exceeded 20,000, with more than 80% of participants achieving a pass. Some 90 companies are taking part in the scheme, comprising 5,500 employees across the whole sector including the banks.

Next year will see our efforts concentrated on developing more online options and funding opportunities to members and the development of further learning career pathways. All of this helps to ensure not only that industry standards are high but that debt collection practice is as current and relevant for the customer as possible.

We are already looking ahead to next year to ensure that whatever the challenges 2016 has in store for our industry, the CSA will be at the heart of the debate.