Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles, Chair of the Financial Inclusion Commission, said:
“We welcome the FCA’s decision to keep its existing definition of vulnerable consumers, rather than introducing a new definition proposed last year.
“As we have argued, the new proposal risked weakening the definition of vulnerable customers and would have been a step backwards for consumer protection.
“We are delighted that the FCA listened to the concerns of the FIC and a coalition of organisations - including Bristol Personal Finance Research Centre, Money and Mental Health Policy Institute, Age UK, StepChange and Macmillan - and has opted for the right approach to defining vulnerability”.
Notes to editors
The FCA’s definition of a vulnerable consumer is:
“Someone who, due to their personal circumstances, is especially susceptible to detriment, particularly when a firm is not acting with appropriate levels of care”.
The change proposed in the FCA’s Our Approach to Consumers 2017 consultation paper, now dropped, would have changed the definition to:
“People who can readily be identified as significantly less able to engage with the market, and/or people who would suffer disproportionately if things go wrong.”