- I have a complaint about a bank or financial services firm, are you able to help?
- If my complaint falls under the remit of another regulator, can you pass it on to them?
- I have a complaint, what should I do?
- I’ve fallen victim to an scam, are you able to help?
- Does the PSR ask consumers for money?
- How can I stop myself falling victim to a scam?
- What if I’ve already fallen victim to a scam?
- How does protection differ between payment systems?
The PSR does not authorise or regulate firms offering financial services in the UK (like banks and investments firms). We regulate payment systems designated by HM Treasury, a full list of which can be found on our website here.
Firms offering financial services in the UK must generally be authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). You can use the FCA’s Financial Services Register to check whether a firm is authorised by them.
If you would like to make a complaint about a FCA regulated firm you can follow the complaints process on their website.
Note that we are unable to intervene in disputes with retailers or other suppliers or get money back on behalf of customers.
Due to the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR), we are unable to directly share any complaints we receive with the appropriate regulator unless you give us written permission to do so in your correspondence.
As an economic regulator rather than a conduct regulator, the PSR does not handle queries or complaints from consumers about individual payments, including about refunds. If you’ve had a problem making a payment, obtaining a refund, or suspect fraudulent activity (including if you have fallen victim to an APP scam), the best thing to do first is contact your account provider (e.g., your bank) or your card issuer. If you feel the situation is still not resolved and want to complain, you can contact the Financial Ombudsman Service.
However, there are areas under which the PSR can hear complaints and disputes. We have separate processes for handling different types of complaint or dispute which we set out further details of below.
Complaints about legal obligations
If you are part of the UK payment systems industry and have a complaint about a breach or a failure to comply with a legal obligation within the PSR’s remit, then the PSR may investigate your complaint.
Examples of complaints that the PSR may look into include those concerning a regulatory direction we have made, a regulatory requirement or rule we have imposed, or a decision we have issued. You can find further information about the general complaints process here.
We can also investigate complaints about breaches of other legislation for which we are the relevant authority. This includes:
- Competition rules: We may consider complaints with regards to anti-competitive agreements and/or abuses of dominance under Part 1 of the Competition Act 1998 relating to participation in payment systems. You can read more in our guidance here.
- Payment Services Regulations 2017: Under Regulation 61 and Part 8 we can consider complaints with regards to information on ATM withdrawal charges and access to payment systems and bank accounts. You can read more in our guidance here.
- The Interchange Fee Regulations: You can read more in our guidance here.
- Payment Accounts Regulations 2015: The PSR will assess complaints made to us about a designated switching scheme for the purpose of determining whether or not a scheme should remain a designated switching scheme. You can read more in paragraphs 5.8 to 5.11 of our guidance here.
Please note that for us to consider whether a complaint falls within our remit we will need detailed information. Complainants should submit a reasoned case which sets out the facts, why you think a legal obligation is being breached or not complied with, and why you think the PSR should intervene.
Certain representative bodies designated by HM Treasury have the right to make 'super-complaints' to the PSR if they believe that features of the payment systems market in the UK are, or appear to be, significantly damaging to the interests of service-users. Further details on super complaints can be found here.
Disputes are disagreements between participants, or between participants and service-users. The main kind of dispute the PSR may review or investigate is covered by sections 56 and 57 FSBRA. Applications about these disputes relate to access to payment systems – either granting new access, or modifying the fees, charges, terms of conditions of existing access to payment systems or participation in payment systems. Further details can be found here.
Other disputes between participants, or between participants and service-users (over matters other than access to payment systems under sections 56 or 57 FSBRA) may also be put to us for consideration, but we are not a substitute or alternative to the courts in determining and enforcing private legal rights.
The PSR is unable to investigate individual cases of fraud. If you have fallen victim to a scam, you should first contact your bank, building society or other relevant financial organisation to report any loss.
Other organisations you may wish to contact if you have not already done so are:
- Action Fraud, the Police national fraud reporting centre.
- Victim Support, if you require additional support.
- Citizen’s Advice, if you need advice.
Firms offering financial services in the UK must generally be authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). You can use the FCA’s Financial Services Register to check whether a firm is authorised by the FCA. If you’ve fallen victim to a clone firm (a firm which is not authorised or registered by the FCA but claims to be), you can report it to the FCA on their website.
No - we would never ask a consumer for money or personal information, like bank account details or internet banking passwords.
All PSR email addresses end with @psr.org.uk. Scam emails and letters also often contain spelling mistakes and poor grammar.
If you receive a suspicious email, call or message via social media from the PSR asking you for money please forward us the email or phone number at firstname.lastname@example.org immediately.
Scammers may contact you by email, post or a phone call and claim to be from the PSR or use the name of an employee, to give the impression that the communication is genuine. Communications may even contain email addresses and logos which seem authentic.
Fraudsters use a number of techniques, but if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Keep in mind that we never contact members of the public asking for money or bank account details. Here are some tips
- Check who you’re talking to. If someone is claiming to be from your bank, the PSR or another financial regulator like the FCA, and has contacted you out of the blue asking for money, hang up the phone and get in touch with the organisation directly using their publicly listed contact details.
- Look a little closer. There may be details in the email, letter or phone call that indicate it is not from a genuine source, such as it listing an overseas contact phone number or an email address from a hotmail or gmail account. Scam emails and letters also often contain spelling mistakes and poor grammar.
- Take five. Don’t allow yourself to be pressured into sending money or revealing your personal details. Fraudsters will try to panic you into sending them funds by claiming your account is at risk or that you’ll lose money if you don’t act now. Trustworthy organisations don’t do this. Take a deep breath and talk about your concerns with a friend or family member.
- Say no. No need to be polite, just hang up the phone or end the interaction.
If you have fallen victim to a scam you should contact your local Police station and Action Fraud.
If you have already shared your banking information you should also call your bank immediately to let them know what has happened so they can protect your account.
Different payment methods come with different levels of protection for the customers who use them, which can affect how (or if at all) you get your money back if something goes wrong with your purchase, such as the seller stops trading or there is a problem with the goods you have bought.
Both credit and debit cards allow customers to ask for a chargeback if there are any disputed transactions, though this is a voluntary system operated by the card schemes, so you are not guaranteed to get your money back.
If you use a credit card to buy goods or services and there are problems, and you paid some (or all) of the cost by credit card and the cash price of the goods is more than £100 but less than £30,000 then the transaction could be covered by Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act. This allows you to raise a claim against your credit card provider and you may be able to get your money back.
Always check with the retailer and your bank or card provider whether they offer refunds before making a purchase.
Other organisations you may wish to contact are:
- Financial Ombudsman Service, service that settles complaints between consumers and businesses that provide financial services.
- Citizen’s Advice, if you need advice.