Do you have relevant expertise and experience or a special interest in the Financial Guidance and Claims [Lords] Bill, which is currently passing through Parliament?
If so, you can submit your views in writing to the House of Commons Public Bill Committee which is going to consider this Bill.
The Public Bill Committee is now able to receive written evidence. The sooner you send in your submission, the more time the Committee will have to take it into consideration.
The Committee will first meet on Thursday 1 February 2018. It will stop receiving written evidence at the end of the Committee stage, which is expected to be not later than 5.00pm on Tuesday 6 February 2018. However, please note that when the Committee concludes its consideration of the Bill it is no longer able to receive written evidence and it can conclude earlier than the expected deadline of 5.00pm on Tuesday 6 February 2018.*
* In the last Parliamentary Session, the following Public Bill Committees concluded their consideration of the Bill earlier than scheduled: Criminal Finances, Cultural Property (Armed Conflicts), Health Service Medical Supplies (Costs), Neighbourhood Planning, Savings (Government Contributions), Technical and Further Education, Commonwealth Development Corporation, Children & Social Work, National Citizen Service, and Bus Services.
Aims of the Bill
The Bill has two main parts:
Part 1 would merge three existing government-sponsored guidance services - the Money Advice Service, the Pensions Advisory Service and Pension Wise - to create a new Single Financial Guidance Body (SFGB). This is to help “ensure that members of the public can access good-quality, free-to-client, impartial financial guidance and debt advice.” The provisions follow three government consultations. The SFGB is expected to be set up and operational from late 2018. (HL Deb 21 November 2017 c86).
Part 2 would make changes to the regulation of Claims Management Companies (CMCs). CMCs provide advice and services to assist people in making compensation claims in various sectors, such as personal injury and financial products. The Government has expressed concern that “there is evidence of malpractice” in the industry. In March 2016, following an independent review, the Government said it would change the regulatory system for CMCs. Under the Bill, regulatory responsibility will pass from the Ministry of Justice to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
Also under Part 2, complaints handling would be transferred from the Legal Ombudsman to the Financial Ombudsman Service. The FCA would also be given the power to impose a cap on the fees that CMCs can charge for their services. Ahead of this, an interim cap on fees would apply to PPI claims.
Follow the progress of the Financial Guidance and Claims [Lords] Bill
The Financial Guidance and Claims Bill [HL] 2017-19 was introduced in the House of Lords on 22 June 2017 and completed its passage though that House on 21 November. It was introduced to the House of Commons on 22 November 2017 as Bill 131 and had its Second Reading on Monday 22 January 2018.
This Bill has now been committed to a Public Bill Committee which will meet for the first time on Thursday 1 February 2018.
Guidance on submitting written evidence
Deadline for written evidence submissions
The Public Bill Committee is now able to receive written evidence. The sooner you send in your submission, the more time the Committee will have to take it into consideration, and possibly reflect it in an amendment. The order in which amendments are taken in Committee will be available in due course under Selection of Amendments on the Bill documents pages. Once the Committee has dealt with an amendment it will not revisit it.
The Committee is expected to meet for the first time on Tuesday Thursday 1 February 2018; it will stop receiving written evidence at the end of the Committee stage on Tuesday 6 February 2018. Please note that when the Committee concludes its consideration of the Bill it is no longer able to receive written evidence and it can conclude earlier than the expected deadline of 5.00pm on Tuesday 6 February 2018.
Your submission should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Further guidance on submitting written evidence can be found here.