Complaints Commissioner  

Fos assessor named new Complaints Commissioner

Fos assessor named new Complaints Commissioner

The incoming watchdog of the Financial Conduct Authority has been confirmed with Antony Townsend set to retire from the role of Complaints Commissioner after six years. 

At the beginning of November Amerdeep Somal is set to take up the mantle as commissioner, the independent watchdog of the FCA, Prudential Regulation Authority and the Bank of England. 

Ms Somal is currently the independent assessor of the Financial Ombudsman Service and a council member on the General Medical Council, positions she will relinquish before joining the regulatory watchdog. 

She will however retain her positions as a judge of the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal and as chief commissioner at the Data and Marketing Commission. 

Ms Somal promised to ensure the regulators were "held accountable and open to rigorous scrutiny". 

She added: "The complaints commissioner plays a critical role – not only in providing people who are unhappy with the financial regulators with recourse to an independent review but also in helping them focus more widely on where they could improve the experience of all their customers."

Ms Somal will be replaced as independent assessor at the ombudsman by Dame Gillian Guy, who announced last month she was leaving the top role at the charity Citizens Advice after a decade.  

Christopher Woolard, interim chief executive of the FCA, said independent scrutiny was "vital to the transparency and standards of the UK regulatory system". 

The FCA, PRA and the Bank are currently consulting on changes to the way in which they make compensation payments to consumers in cases of regulatory shortcomings.

But the eight-week consultation came under fire earlier today from campaigners Gina and Alan Miller who branded the proposals "scandalous" and "intellectually dishonest and morally questionable". 

The True and Fair Campaign led by the Millers called on MPs to suspend the consultation until three ongoing independent investigations linked to the FCA had published final findings. 

rachel.mortimer@ft.com 

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