The Ombud Council is established in terms of section 175(1) of the Financial Sector Regulation (FSR) Act of 2017. The objective of the Council is to ensure that financial customers have access to affordable, effective, independent, and fair alternative dispute resolution processes for complaints about financial institutions in relation to financial products, financial services and services provided by financial infrastructures.
The Ombud Council has oversight powers over statutory and industry financial sector ombuds. In accordance with the FSR Act, the Ombud Council must recognise industry schemes, set enhanced governance and accountability requirements, harmonise and strengthen standards of practice for ombud schemes through rule-making and enforcement powers, and develop a consistent framework for external dispute resolution mechanisms across the financial services sector.
The process of recognising financial sector industry ombud schemes, as contemplated in section 194 of the FSR Act, commenced in December 2021, with applications for recognition required to be submitted by 11 February 2022. The following five existing industry ombud schemes, previously recognised under the repealed Financial Sector Ombud Schemes Act, 37 of 2004, have applied to the Ombud Council for recognition:
As part of the recognition process, the Ombud Council is required by s.214 of the FSR Act to invite public comment on the governing rules of an industry ombud scheme. The Ombud Council is therefore today publishing the draft governing rules of each of the above-mentioned schemes, together with supporting statements explaining the need for, intended operation and expected impact of each set of governing rules, for comment.
The deadline for comment is 18h00 on 11 April 2022.
Email submission to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Issued by: Ombud Council
Date: 11 March 2022