On 31 July 2018, the European Banking Authority (EBA) published a final report on the application of the existing Joint Committee Guidelines on complaints-handling to authorities competent for supervising the new institutions under the Payment Service Directive (PSD2) and the Mortgage Credit Directive (MCD). The final report includes an extension of the scope of the Joint Committee Guidelines on complaints-handling for the securities (ESMA) and banking (EBA) sectors (Joint Committee Guidelines) with the aim to ensure a consistent application of regulatory rules for complaints-handling in all financial sectors and jurisdictions and increase consumer confidence, strengthen supervisory practices and maintain a level playing field in the EU banking, investment and insurance sectors.
Guidelines on complaints-handling were originally drafted by the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) in 2012 and applied only to insurance undertakings. In 2014, the EBA and ESMA adopted the Joint Committee Guidelines. As a consequence of the introduction of the new providers under MCD ("credit intermediaries" and "non-creditor institution creditors") and under PSD2 ("payment initiation service providers" (PISPs) and "account information service providers" (AISPs)), the EBA has extended the scope of the Joint Committee Guidelines to apply to these new providers.
The Joint Committee Guidelines apply to authorities competent for supervising complaints-handling by firms in their jurisdiction. As of 1 May 2019, the scope of the Joint Committee Guidelines is extended to also apply to authorities competent for supervising complaints-handling by
- PISPs that only provide payment initiation services under PSD2;
- AISPs covered by the exemptions under Article 33 of PSD2, however, only with respect to security-related complaints;
- Credit intermediaries under MCD; and
- Non-credit institution creditors under MCD.
As for AISPs that only offer account information services, the EBA emphasises that the Joint Committee Guidelines will apply only to security-related complaints.
Finally, taking into account that some AISPs, non-credit institution creditors and credit intermediaries are very small, the EBA emphasizes in the final report that competent authorities should apply the Joint Committee Guidelines in a proportionate manner, taking into account the nature, scale and complexity of the businesses of those institutions and the nature and range of the services they offer.
The next step is that the Joint Committee Guidelines will be translated into the official EU languages and published on the EBA's website following a deadline of two months for competent authorities to report whether or not they comply with the Joint Committee Guidelines.
The final report on the application of the existing Joint Committee Guidelines on complaints-handling to authorities competent for supervising the new institutions under PSD2 and/or MCD is available here.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with any member of the Bird & Bird international payments team - see the contacts in the EU below.