We recently wrote to some customers about the Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) policy on their mortgage account and an issue that we have identified. We were unable to confirm that the customers’ occupation met the eligibility criteria when they took out their PPI policy. This may have affected how the policy operated and if a successful claim could have been made on the policy.
As we were unable to confirm that the customers’ occupation met the eligibility criteria, we have decided to refund the premiums they were charged.
If you got this letter the following Q&A may help to answer questions you might have.
Why have I received this letter?
We are unable to confirm that your occupation met the eligibility criteria when your PPI policy was taken out. This means we charged a premium for the PPI cover when you may not have been eligible for the product and to make a claim.
What is PPI?
PPI is an optional insurance product that provides protection for mortgage repayments. It pays out money to help you to cover your mortgage repayments for a period if you cannot work due to accident, illness, involuntary unemployment; or accident, illness and hospitalisation if you are state or self-employed. Terms and conditions apply. The benefits payable depend on the cover selected;
This product is underwritten by AXA France IARD S.A., trading as AXA Partners – Credit & Lifestyle Protection.
When did you find out about this issue?
We identified this issue in June 2021. Since then we have identified all affected accounts.
How are you correcting this?
We are writing to each affected customer and refunding the total PPI premiums we charged. This includes an interest payment for not having access to the money paid. We are also writing to any other customers on the account to let them know about this, as the PPI premiums were collected with their mortgage repayment.
How are you making sure this doesn’t happen again?
This issue occurred when the PPI policy was first sold to affected customers. As we no longer sell PPI, this cannot happen again.
Has the Central Bank of Ireland (CBI) been informed of this?
Yes, the CBI has been informed in line with our regulatory reporting obligations.
Has this affected my credit record?
For most customers it has not affected your record with the Irish Credit Bureau (ICB) or the Central Bank of Ireland’s Central Credit Register (CCR). If your ICB or CCR record is incorrect, we have included information about this in your letter.
I have an active PPI policy. Do I need to do anything now?
If you received the PPI declaration forms with your letter, you need to complete and return one of these forms to us to let us know whether you want to keep or cancel your PPI cover.
If you would like to keep your PPI cover in place, please complete Option 1.
If you would like to cancel your PPI cover, please complete Option 2. If you decide to cancel your cover, your monthly repayments will reduce by your current PPI premium amount. If you have a joint policy, the joint policy holder’s monthly PPI premium will still be charged.
If you did not receive the PPI declaration forms, you don’t need to do anything.
I have been offered the opportunity to keep or cancel the PPI cover. What do I need to do now?
We have enclosed two declaration forms in the letter you received and we ask that you complete one of these forms and return it to us in the enclosed prepaid envelope by 2 March 2022.
If you would like to keep the PPI cover, please complete Option 1. If you would like to cancel the PPI cover, please complete Option 2. If we do not receive the form by 2 March 2022, we will cancel your cover for you.
Before you make your decision please check the eligibility criteria. If you do not meet the criteria it may affect your ability to make a claim. You should also consider any other protection policies you might have such as income protection, critical illness cover or employer benefits which may cover your financial outgoings if you were unable to work.
If I cancel my policy/my policy is no longer active, what alternative protection can I get?
If you are concerned about no longer having this protection, you may benefit from a review of your protection needs with either an independent financial advisor, or our EBS Team. If you would like more information, please contact us or visit www.ebs.ie/insurance/financial-review.
You may not be able to take out another PPI policy, as Mortgage PPI is no longer sold in the Republic of Ireland. You can however take out other protection policies, such as income protection or critical illness cover, which may cover your financial outgoings if you were unable to work.
How have you calculated the refund?
The refund has been calculated as follows:
Total refund equals the amount of premiums we charged you for your policy. This also includes an interest payment for not having access to this money you paid.
What are PPI arrears?
PPI arrears refers to any arrears amount on the mortgage account which is directly related to PPI. In some cases we have used your refund to reduce or clear this amount and we told you this in our letter.
Where applicable, we gave you any residual refund by cheque.
My PPI policy is closed. Do I need to do anything now?
No, you don’t need to do anything. If you would like to talk to us, please ring us on 0818 664 014 between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.
Who can I speak to if I have a question or want to complain?
If you have a question or want to complain please ring us on 0818 664 014 or you can write to us at:
EBS Insurance Team
6th Floor Block H,
You can also complain to the Financial Services & Pensions Ombudsman (FSPO). The FSPO seeks to resolve complaints through mediation, or through investigation and adjudication. Information about the services of the FSPO is available from www.fspo.ie.