FOS refuses to reveal level of staff qualifications

The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) has refused to disclose the qualifications held by its staff, saying financial qualifications do not necessarily make people good adjudicators.

Last week, Money Marketing, Fund Strategy’s sister publication, revealed low levels of advice skills in the Financial Services Authority’s (FSA) small firms and contact division.

This prompted calls from IFAs for the FOS to disclose the financial services qualifications held by its adjudicators. But an FOS spokeswoman says ombudsman staff have a “wide range of specialist qualifications and experience” that fit their roles but financial qualifications are not necessarily required. (article continues below)

Unlike the FSA, the FOS is not required to disclose information under the Freedom of Information Act.

She says: “Qualifications and financial industry experience alone do not necessarily make someone a good adjudicator. Our staff need to have the ability to investigate and resolve complaints fairly and impartially to the highest standards.”