FAQ: Payment Protection Insurance FAQ's

How To Check If You Have Been Paying For Payment Protection Insurance

If you have taken out a financial product over the past ten years, then you may have found yourself asking “was I mis-sold PPI?” – and you’re not alone. The widespread scandal concerning this has led millions of people to discover that they had these policies added to their loans, credit cards or other agreements, causing them to pay out unnecessary amounts of money.

More than 1.5million cases have been settled since the Citizen Advice Bureau made their complaint, with over £1billion being paid out in compensation during 2011 alone. With the average payout per customer achieved through iSmart totalling £3,000, it is hardly surprising that establishing whether or not you have wrongly received the policy is a priority for many households.

The problem with discovering the truth behind your situation is that the mis-selling of PPI is not always obvious. For some individuals, the policy was added to their loan or product without their knowledge and this could mean they are still unaware of its existence.

If you have received a loan, credit card, mortgage or other form of credit agreement over the past decade it is therefore important that you review the documentation relating to it carefully. If the cover was added to your policy, then it will be documented somewhere in your credit agreement or apparent from your monthly statements and this is what you will need to check.

It is worth bearing in mind however, that the insurance will not always be labelled as “payment protection insurance” but could be titled “mortgage protection insurance” or even “accident and illness cover”. You may wish to check your agreements carefully for any mention of this type of protection – where repayments would be covered in the event of your illness or unemployment.

To begin lodging your claim all you need to have is your agreement number or credit card number. If you have your original loan documentation then this can also be beneficial but it is not a mandatory requirement.

It is important to remember that there are no limits on the number of claims which you can make for mis-sold PPI, as individuals are likely to have taken more than one financial product over the past ten years, meaning they could have been mis-sold the insurance on numerous occasions.

It is therefore advisable that you check all of your credit agreements carefully. You may choose to obtain the services of a claim firm such as iSmart to help you establish your situation if you do not wish to handle your claim directly.

Some claimants are deterred from the process of claiming for mis-sold PPI due to the fact that a number of claims will be denied by the lenders. In these situations, the case may be referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) – a separate body.

This should not deter claimants however, as the FOS reported an 89% success rate in 2009, settling the majority of its cases in favour of the claimant.