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BBRS announces Ombudsman Association membership

26 October 2022

The Business Banking Resolution Service (BBRS) has successfully obtained Complaint Handler membership of the Ombudsman Association (OA).

The BBRS is a not-for-profit, free, dispute resolution service for SMEs who have claims against their banks. Its membership of the OA was awarded following a review of the service covering areas such as independence, accessibility, openness, transparency and efficiency. A submission on these areas was supported by evidence of the robust policies, processes and procedures of the BBRS.

Mark Grimshaw, Chief Executive of the BBRS commented, “I’m very pleased that our independence and best practice approach has been recognised with membership of the OA. Our membership will help us to maintain the highest standards.”

Membership of the OA gives the BBRS access to forums and networks covering areas such as operations, legal, quality and policy. BBRS leadership and their teams will be able to engage and network with other ombudsman schemes and complaint handling organisations, with the opportunity to discuss common challenges and experiences.

Donal Galligan, Chief Executive of the OA, said, “We’re delighted that the BBRS meets our Complaint Handler Member criteria and has joined the OA. In sharing experiences, ombudsman schemes and complaint handlers can shape and adopt best practice from across the sector, helping to drive improvements in the delivery of services and complaint handling.”

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Notes to Editors

Media contacts

Press Office: +44 7866 041 111

About the BBRS

The BBRS is a non-profit dispute resolution service set up to resolve disputes between eligible small and medium sized businesses and participating banks. It was established as part of a voluntary commitment following the Simon Walker Review on SME business banking complaints.

The seven participating banks are: Barclays, Danske Bank, HSBC UK, Lloyds Banking Group (including Lloyds Bank and Bank of Scotland), NatWest Group (including Royal Bank of Scotland, NatWest and Ulster Bank Northern Ireland), Santander UK plc, Virgin Money (including Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank). Alongside the participating banks, the BBRS has been set up in collaboration with representative groups acting on behalf of small and medium sized businesses.

BBRSsummaryeligibility criteria

The BBRS is open to businesses with unresolved complaints against their bank who are or were, a:

  • Small to medium sized enterprise (SME) or sole trader
  • Charity, trust or similar
  • Director, significant shareholder, partner or board member of such an organisation, even if it is no longer operating
  • Personal guarantor of any such business

Businesses meeting these criteria may qualify to use the BBRS if they also have:

  • An unresolved business banking complaint against one of the participating banks or their subsidiaries
  • Made a formal complaint to their bank from December 2001 onwards, and not had (or been able to have) review by a bank scheme, agreed a settlement, or gone to court
  • At the time of the complaint, had a turnover of:
    • 2001-2009: between £1 million and £6.5 million
    • 2009-2019: between 2 million Euros and £6.5 million
    • 2019 onwards: between £6.5 million and £10 million

More details and full eligibility criteria can be found on our website:

About the Ombudsman Association

The Ombudsman Association is a professional association for ombudsman schemes and complaint handlers in the UK, Ireland, British Overseas Territories and British Crown Dependencies.

The objectives of the OA are to:

  • Support and promote an effective system of complaint handling and redress.
  • Encourage, develop and protect the role of an ombudsman in both the public and private sectors as the ‘best practice’ model for resolving complaints, and recognising this through membership.
  • Provide an authoritative voice and promote best practice and policy for those involved in complaint handling and redress to ensure an effective service for the public.
  • Support open and transparent accountability and endorse principles of good complaint handling.
  • The OA’s Principles and Standards set out best practice for members in a number of areas:
    • Principles of Good Complaint Handling
    • Principles of Good Governance
    • Service Standards Framework
    • Caseworker Competency Framework

Find an ombudsman on the OA’s website: