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Bank of Scotland fine is 'another victory for consumers'

Citizens Advice Scotland have said the Office of Fair Trading’s decision to fine the Bank of Scotland for mis-handling of complaints is a victory for consumers, and shows that the banks still have a long way to go to win back public trust.

CAS Chief Executive Lucy McTernan said,

“This is another significant victory for consumers – the latest in a very welcome trend.

“In January the Royal Bank of Scotland was penalised for the same thing, and over the last few weeks we’ve seen the High Court rule that banks will have to pay compensation over mis-sold Payment Protection Insurance (PPI).

“The level of complaints we are talking about is huge. HBOS received 122,853 complaints in the second half of 2010 (that’s 673 per day, or one every two minutes).

“CAB advisers see the consequences of unfair banking practices every day. More and more people are struggling to cope with the fallout of the recession. The last thing they need is poor treatment from their bank – and yet clearly that is what many of them have been getting.

“Since they were bailed out by public money in 2008, banks have been saying they want to win back the trust of the public. On this evidence they still have a long way to go. Our message to the banks is very simple: if they want people to trust them again, and if they want to avoid further fines, they should start treating their customers fairly.”

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