Following the recent announcement made by Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert regarding discretionary commission with car finance, we would like to reassure all of our customers that we have never utilised such models of commission within our business.
As a company trading since 2001, it has always been our policy to provide the fairest and best offers and service to our customers, and as such we have never employed discretionary commission practice.
We are happy to answer any individual customer enquiries regarding their own car purchase through either Forces Cars Direct or Motor Source Group. If you would like to request any information regarding your own purchase, please contact our team on the details below:
Tel: 01522 500055
Email: [email protected]
By post: Building 2, Alumina Court, Tritton Road, Lincoln, LN6 7QY
What is Discretionary Commission?
Until 2021, discretionary commission arrangements allowed finance brokers and car dealers to increase the interest charged in order to increase the commission amount paid, meaning the customer would overpay on the agreement without knowing.
In January 2021, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) banned discretionary commission arrangements (DCAs) as unfair practice against consumers.
In January 2024, the FCA launched a major investigation which is ongoing and currently planned for completion in September.
During the investigation, consumers are able to lodge complaints if affected by a DCA. The FCA has extended the timeframe in which motor finance firms can deal with complaints (received after 17th November 2023). This means that, although firms are encouraged to progress complaints, they do not have to make any decisions until after the FCA report findings from their investigation, which is currently planned to be towards the end of September 2024.
Does this affect me?
If you bought a car, van or motorbike on PCP or Hire Purchase (not leasing) before 28th January 2021 it is possible that your agreement may have been subject to a discretionary commission.
Forces Cars Direct Ltd has never practiced this method of commission and so if you purchased your vehicle through our team here you will not have been subjected to this.
What can I do if I think I’ve been affected?
Your complaint should be made to the lender that provided the car finance (there are forms online that you can use as a template). This is the firm you made the monthly payments to and may not be the car dealer/broker that you bought your car from.
Check your agreement documents that you have to confirm as much information as you can about your finance agreement, including lender name and agreement number.
If you have the firms name but don’t have any additional information, you can contact the firm to request this. Please note that firms only need to keep information on finance agreements for six years after the agreement ends.
If you cannot remember the finance firm name but you know who you bought your car from, you may be able to ask the dealer/broker for assistance. Make sure you include as much information as you can about when you bought the car including registration number, dates, your name, date of birth, and address at the time.
If the car finance provider is no longer trading, unfortunately you will not be able to make a claim.
What will happen next?
No action will be taken until the FCA completes the investigation, which is planned for the end of September 2024.
If the investigation reports that there has been a widespread issue with discretionary commission arrangements were applied to car finance agreements before 2021, it has said that it will “identify how best to make sure people who are owed compensation receive an appropriate settlement in an orderly, consistent and efficient way.”