To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what progress is being made by the Financial Conduct Authority on developing a definition of duty of care for financial services providers; and what plans the Government has to bring forward legislation to protect those with (a) mental health issues and (b) cancer from pressures from financial services providers.
The government believes that the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), as the UK’s independent conduct regulator for the financial services industry, is best placed to evaluate the merits of a duty of care for financial services providers. We therefore welcome the FCA’s commitment to publish a Discussion Paper on the subject, which the FCA plans to publish after the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.
UK banks’ and building societies’ treatment of their customers is already governed by the FCA in its Principles for Businesses. This includes a general requirement for firms to provide a prompt, efficient and fair service to all of their customers. The FCA’s Handbook also requires firms to identify particularly vulnerable customers, and to deal with such customers appropriately. In addition, like all service providers, banks and building societies are bound under the Equality Act 2010 to make reasonable adjustments, where necessary, in the way they deliver their services.