Dealing with older complaints
The Historical Scheme is now closed to new registrants.
This page provides information to customers who have an active historical case, which was registered on or before the deadline of 14 February 2023.
Our Historical Scheme is for complaints relating to incidents (acts or omissions on the part of the bank) that took place between 1 December 2001 and 31 March 2019.
In order to be eligible for our Historical Scheme, your business must meet the following financial criteria:
|Businesses (sole trader, company, partnership, friendly or other co-operative society)
|Complaint made to Bank between 1 December 2001 and 31 October 2009
|Annual turnover: At least £1 million but less than £6.5 million
|Balance Sheet: Less than £5 million**
|Annual income of at least £1 million but less than £6.5 million
|Net asset value of at least £1 million but less than £5 million
|Complaint made to Bank between 1 November 2009 and 31 March 2019
|Annual turnover: More than €2 million but less than £6.5 million*
|Balance Sheet: More than €2 million but less than £5 million**
* Businesses who made complaints on or after 1 November 2009 with a turnover or annual balance sheet not exceeding €2 million may also be eligible if they employed 10 or more persons.
** Balance sheet means gross or total (not net) assets
Your complaint must not be, or have been, eligible for the Financial Ombudsman Service or one of the excluded schemes (you can see the full list at the end of this page). If your complaint was not eligible for the Financial Ombudsman Service, you may be eligible for the BBRS.
Your complaint must not have been the subject of litigation.
You must not have accepted settlement of your complaint from the bank already.
Getting help if a company has been dissolved
Certain complaints relating to businesses that have been dissolved (for example companies that have been struck off the register of companies) or are insolvent can be brought to the BBRS provided they satisfy our eligibility conditions.
Most dissolved businesses can technically no longer speak for themselves – and most insolvent businesses are in the hands of insolvency practitioners. The people who can bring complaints on behalf of dissolved or insolvent businesses can be found here.
For complaints that are eligible, our investigation and decision-making processes will be the same as that for any other business entering our service, namely decisions will be made on the basis of what is fair and reasonable in the circumstances.
However, for most dissolved businesses, our rules set out who can bring such complaints on their behalf, the agreements needed for that to happen, and who can receive any award that we might make. It is not, however, necessary for a dissolved business to have been restored in order to bring a complaint to the BBRS.
This is a complex area – particularly if the business (whether a company, partnership, trust etc.) has been dissolved for too long to be restored (usually six years). However, we are here to help and will discuss any case specific issues with you.
Time Limits for the Historical Scheme
The Historical Scheme is now closed to new registrants.
- If the incident occurred on or before 1 October 2017, you must have complained to
your bank by the earlier of
- 1 April 2019; and
- the date which is either six years after the incident complained of OR (if
later) three years after you became aware (or ought reasonably to have
become aware) you had cause for complaint
- If the incident occurred after 1 October 2017 but before 1 April 2019, you must have
complained to your bank by the date 18 months after the incident
|Company W suffered a push payment fraud on 9 December 2010. They became aware of this the following week when a supplier reported not receiving a payment. Company W believe the bank is at fault.
|Company W must have complained to their bank before 9 December 2016, six years after the incident took place. Provided they complained to their bank by that date, if they are not satisfied with the resolution provided by the bank, they can register the complaint with the BBRS.
|Company X took out a long-term fixed rate loan on 17 June 2007. On 10 May 2015, when the company wanted to repay the loan early, a director discovered that break costs would immediately become due. The company believe the bank mis-sold them the loan because they were unaware break costs would be payable.
|As Company X only became aware of the issue on 10 May 2015, more than six years after the alleged misselling occurred, they had until 10 May 2018 (i.e. three years from the date they became aware) to raise a complaint with their bank. Provided they complained to their bank by that date, if they are not satisfied with the resolution provided by the bank, they can register the complaint with the BBRS.
|On 14 August 2016, Company Y was informed that their loan was being converted into an overdraft, resulting in higher interest fees. Company Y feels that this was unfair and unreasonable.
|As the incident took place before 1 October 2017, Company Y had until 1 April 2019 to raise a complaint with their bank. Provided they complained to their bank by that date, if they are not satisfied with the resolution provided by the bank, they can register their complaint with the BBRS.
|On 20 November 2018, Company Z received a notice from their bank to say that they had put a stop on their account due to late payment of overdraft fees. Company Z feels that this was unwarranted and had an adverse effect on their business.
As the incident took place after 1 October 2017 but before 1 April 2019, Company Z had until 20 May 2020 to complain to their bank – 18 months from the date of the incident.
Provided they complained to their bank by that date, if they are not satisfied with the resolution provided by the bank, they can register the complaint with the BBRS.
The BBRS may, in some circumstances, also be able to look at complaints that are ineligible. You can find out more about this here.
Awards for the historical scheme
If a complaint is upheld, the BBRS will tell the bank to put things right. You can find out
more about what the BBRS can ask banks to do on our awards page.
The BBRS’ rules set financial limits on the awards it can require banks to pay successful complainants. For the historical scheme this is £350,000.
Cases dealt with by some other schemes are not eligible for our service
Your complaint must not be, or have been eligible for one of the excluded schemes. The
full list of excluded schemes is:
- HBOS Reading Customer Review: Professor Russel Griggs and (following the Sir
Ross Cranston review) the Sir David Foskett Panel Review
- RBS’s Global Restructuring Group (GRG): Sir William Blackburne
- Virgin Money (including Clydesdale Bank PLC & Yorkshire Bank) Complex Tailored
Business Loans (CTBLS)
- Any review conducted independently of the relevant bank of the sale of Interest
Rate Hedging Products (IRHP) where the review was conducted as a result of
action by the regulator. Additional information on this can be found on the
Financial Conduct Authority’s website here.
If your case has been through an excluded scheme we would suggest visiting our page on Concessionary Cases (also known as ‘Boundary’ cases) to see if you could be assisted with your case by the BBRS.