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DISP 3.7 Awards by the Ombudsman


Where a complaint is determined in favour of the complainant, the Ombudsman's determination may include one or more of the following:17

  1. (1)

    a money award against the respondent; or17

  2. (2)

    an interest award against the respondent; or17

  3. (3)

    a costs award against the respondent; or17

  4. (4)

    a direction to the respondent.17

Money awards


A money award may be such amount as the Ombudsman considers to be fair compensation for one or more of the following:

  1. (1)

    financial loss (including consequential or prospective loss); or

  2. (2)

    pain and suffering; or

  3. (3)

    damage to reputation; or

  4. (4)

    distress or inconvenience;

whether or not a court would award compensation.17


17Where the Ombudsman is determining what amount (if any) constitutes fair compensation as a money award in relation to a relevant new complaint or a relevant transitional complaint, the Ombudsman Transitional Order and the Mortgages and General Insurance Complaints Transitional Order require him to take into account what amount (if any) might have been expected to be awarded by way of compensation in relation to an equivalent complaint dealt with under the former scheme in question immediately before the relevant transitional order came into effect.


17The maximum money award which the Ombudsman may make is £100,000.


17For the purpose of calculating the maximum money award, the following are excluded:

  1. (1)

    any interest awarded on the amount payable under a money award;

  2. (2)

    any costs awarded; and

  3. (3)

    any interest awarded on costs.


17If the Ombudsman considers that fair compensation requires payment of a larger amount, he may recommend that the respondent pays the complainant the balance.


17The Ombudsman will maintain a register of each money award.

Interest awards


1 7 An interest award may provide for the amount payable under the money award to bear interest at a rate and as from a date specified in the award.

Costs awards


17A costs award may:

  1. (1)

    be such amount as the Ombudsman considers to be fair, to cover some or all of the costs which were reasonably incurred by the complainant in respect of the complaint; and

  2. (2)

    include interest on that amount at a rate and as from a date specified in the award.

DISP 3.7.10GRP

17In most cases complainants should not need to have professional advisers to bring complaints to the Financial Ombudsman Service, so awards of costs are unlikely to be common.


DISP 3.7.11RRP

1 7 A direction may require the respondent to take such steps in relation to the complainant as the Ombudsman considers just and appropriate (whether or not a court could order those steps to be taken).

Complying with awards and settlements

DISP 3.7.12RRP

17A respondent must comply promptly with:

  1. (1)

    any award or direction made by the Ombudsman; and

  2. (2)

    any settlement which it agrees at an earlier stage of the procedures.

DISP 3.7.13GRP

17Under the Act, a complainant can enforce through the courts a money award registered by the Ombudsman or a direction made by the Ombudsman.