Balens Ltd and BIFS Ltd are ethical companies, and customer satisfaction is a cornerstone of our business. We aim to treat all our customers fairly and we always listen to our clients, and take any complaint seriously. There is no charge for a client to make a complaint to Balens Ltd or BIFS Ltd.
Any complaint, whether made in writing or verbally, is immediately referred to our Complaints Officer (CO), who is Joe Balen. We also record any complaint we receive. Our CO is responsible for ensuring that we thoroughly investigate any complaints.
As soon as a complaint is received:
All written complaints will be acknowledged by our CO in writing within five business days of receipt.
All verbal complaints will also be acknowledged by our CO in writing within five business days of receipt. This acknowledgement letter will also contain our understanding of the complaint and will ask the complainant to confirm in writing that he / she agrees with our understanding of the matter.
If the complaint can be amicably resolved within three business days our acknowledgement letter will also outline the result of our investigation and information about the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).
If our investigation is not resolved within five business days, our acknowledgement letter will confirm that we will:
- Investigate the complaint and aim to respond within 4 weeks of receiving the complaint. The time limit is 8 weeks, however we will aim to respond in 4 weeks.
- Explain that, if we cannot complete the investigation within 4 weeks of receiving the complaint, we will write again giving the reason for the delay.
- Explain that on completion of our investigation we will inform the complainant of the outcome and the options available to him / her.
If the complaint is about another party, such as an insurer with whom we have placed business, we will refer details of the complaint to the third party and confirm this course of action to the complainant in writing.
After we have investigated the complaint:
Immediately on completion of our investigation our CO will write to the complainant notifying him/her of the outcome of our investigation.
We will set out the nature and terms of any settlement (if applicable). Any compensation we offer will be fair and the basis of the calculation will be explained.
Our letter will also advise that if the complainant is not satisfied with the outcome he / she may refer the matter to the FOS and will point out that such a referral should be made within the next six months or he / she may lose that right.
Our letter will include the name, address, website address and telephone number of the FOS and a leaflet which explains the FOS arrangements.
If we cannot resolve the complaint within four weeks:
If, for any reason, our investigation is not concluded within four weeks, our CO will write to the complainant again informing him / her that our investigation is continuing, giving the reasons for the delay and a date by which our CO expects to be able to contact the complainant again.
If we cannot resolve the complaint within eight weeks:
While we would always aim to complete an investigation within eight weeks at most, if, for any reason, our investigation is not concluded within this period, our CO will write to the complainant again. We will inform him / her of the reasons for the further delay and advise that if he/she is not satisfied with our progress he / she may refer the complaint to the FOS. See www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk for further details.
This letter will also point out that such a referral should be made within the next six months or the complainant may lose that right. Our letter will include the name, address, telephone number and website address of the FOS and a leaflet which explains the FOS arrangements.
If your policy is underwritten by a Lloyds Syndicate, it may be possible for you to refer the matter to the complaints team at Lloyds. Please refer to Balens for guidance. The address of Lloyd’s is; Complaints Team, 1 Lime Street, London EC3M 7HA, telephone 020 7327 5693 or firstname.lastname@example.org.