The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) received few complaints relating to peer-to-peer lending and the Innovative Finance ISA (IFISA) in the last three months of 2020.
From October to December 2020, there were fewer than 10 new cases, enquiries or complaints relating to the tax wrapper for debt-based securities.
Over the same period, the FOS received 50 enquiries and saw 46 new cases for loan-based crowdfunding – also known as P2P lending – and 33 enquiries and 49 new cases for investment-based crowdfunding, or equity crowdfunding.
Overall, the FOS received 72,498 new complaints in the second quarter, up five per cent with consumers and businesses getting in touch about Covid-19 related problems.
Although the number of complaints dropped by 13 per cent year-on-year, the FOS said it continued to see an increase in complaints from people who borrowed money and who then felt the debt was unaffordable.
Complaints across most credit products continued to rise in the third quarter, particularly with high-cost short-term credit.
The FOS said it has continued to see high uphold rates across credit products where it sees the most complaints about unaffordable lending.
The ombudsman said these high levels of detriment may be a factor in the level of claims management company (CMC) activity in the complaints about credit products brought to its service.
CMCs are involved in more than half of the complaints (54 per cent) about credit products the FOS receives, compared with an average of just over a third of complaints (35 per cent) in its casework as a whole.
“The rules and guidance around lending and supporting people in financial difficulty are well-established – and we are actively engaging with lenders to ensure that they’re responding effectively and fairly to their customers’ concerns,” FOS said.
“We provide a range of resources to help lenders do this, including information about our approach to resolving cases and a database of ombudsmen’s decisions.”