There are some real horror stories from people who have been dealing with other PPI (Payment Protection Insurance) Claims Companies. Therefore, it is absolutely imperative that should you wish to employ one and this includes us, you should do various checks yourself to establish that they are genuine, and that you are happy to use them.
The most important aspect of dealing with a Claims Company is to establish if they are regulated by the Claim Management Authority or Claims Regulator at the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). You can do this by going onto the Claims Regulators website and inserting the “CRM” number (which can be found at the bottom of any page of a website or information that is provided by a Claims Firm). This is the first part of any justification that a Claims Firm is “fit for purpose”. This is not all however.
You must then establish whether you are happy to deal with this Claims Firm. You should consider whether they approached you. For example, was it via the telephone, text, or email? If so, they have made a direct approach to you, and they are desperate for your business. Why do they want to spend money trying to get your business in? Are they going to do what they say if they have been pushy trying to get your business in the first place? If, as we do, they operate website facilities and, should you wish to enquire about our services, we will gladly look at them for you. However, this is following a direct approach from you, the client, and not a prompted approach.
The next area to look into is to see what sort of feedback is given on the particular Firm. This can always be a little “hit and miss” because there is always going to be clients from any type of business that will have some form of grievance, but of course you can separate the “wheat from the chaff” and it can give you some sort of idea of what the Firm is like, if you do some sort of research into this.
The next, and probably the most important, area to check is to drop them a quick email once you have given your details over (or even before you have given your details over) in order to see what sort of response you are getting. Perhaps ask them what their business is. I always like to make sure that we are open and honest with our clients and we will always say that “As a Firm, we run a small operation which can be overseen by myself, as the Principal, in order to make sure that the claim is looked after in the best way possible. The only way of doing this properly is to make sure that we deal with a sufficient number of claims to maintain our business, but also retain a level of claims that enables us to deal with those individuals to the best of our ability, without sacrificing anyone”.
No Firm is ever perfect, but you have to see whether you “trust” the Firm, and whether they are going to try and charge you any hidden fees. They must all must work on a purely “No Win No Fee” basis. If they do not, and suggest that they should have fees or charges paid upfront or at the back end of any agreement, then do not use them under any circumstances! This is because it is not part of the regulation that they have drawn up against. In addition, it is also important to find out whether you are charged any hidden fees if the claim is for some reason unsuccessful. Again, do not use a Firm that charges this. They should all work purely on a “No Win No Fee” basis.
The next point is that there are a wide range of Firms that offer different fees. Our fee is 20% plus VAT (equivalent to 24% inclusive).
There are some Firms that are over this, and some Firms that are under this. I do not think that the Firms with fees over this would offer any particular greater level of service than we can offer, but I do question some of the reduced fees offered by some Firms. I would question what they are going to do with your information because I do not know how they can operate, and stay in business, charging the reduced fees that they do without some sort of catch - which of course inevitably would lead to the detriment of the client!