Monday, 30 April 2012

Disappointing News on Banking Ombudsman

Today, the Financial Post features an article about federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty saying that he "will not force the country’s banks to resolve client disputes through the Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments (OBSI) and is set to unveil new rules and regulations that will allow financial institutions to hire their own mediators to sort out disputes with clients."

Royal Bank and TD have used private mediation services for the last few years since opting out of OBSI. The world may not be falling dramatically apart because of this but it is and will be worse as made clear in the comparison table of OBSI vs TD and Royal's private mediator ADR Chambers, published today as it happens by Fair Canada. Harm by small individual abuses is harm nevertheless.  Blessing and encouraging the expansion of private dispute resolution will further tilt the scales in favour of the banks over consumers. As the hoary expression goes, "he who pays the piper calls the tune".

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