Phones 4u insurers fined £2.8m for ignoring complaints

Policy Administration Services -- the insurance company used by Phones 4u -- wrongly ignored customers' complaints, the FCA has ruled.

If you've tried to make a complaint about your mobile phone insurance but found your gripes fell on deaf ears, you're not alone, as the insurance firm used by Phones 4u has been fined millions of pounds for wrongly ignoring customer complaints.

Policy Administration Services -- whose insurance deals were sold through Phones 4u shops -- must pay £2.8m, and has paid compensation to 1,438 customers.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) says the firm ignored thousands of complaints from customers, or wrongly turned them down, a failing that meant the provider was "unable to treat customers fairly".

Complaints about policies being mis-sold were waved away "just because customers had signed a Direct Debit form", the FCA said.

The money will go back to the FCA, who will use some of the cash to cover their own costs, and the rest will be sent to the government.

Mobile insurance companies have recently been criticised by the regulatory body for offering unfair terms to phone buyers, including clauses that were broadly defined and open to interpretation by brokers who want to wriggle out of paying, The Guardian reports.

Shoppers often pay for gadget insurance, too scared of their mobile taking an accidental trip down the stairs to forego the pricey extra. The police recently said that mobile phone theft is virtually the only crime on the rise in the UK.

Have you purchased and regretted buying gadget insurance, or do you think it's worth splashing out a monthly fee for peace of mind? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook wall.

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About the author

Luke Westaway is a senior editor at CNET and writer/ presenter of Adventures in Tech, a thrilling gadget show produced in our London office. Luke's focus is on keeping you in the loop with a mix of video, features, expert opinion and analysis.

 

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