Questions of Cash: PPI compensation claim and the cheque I couldn't cash


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The Independent Online

Q. I'm writing about the compensation scheme at the insurer CPP [for the mis-selling of payment protection insurance]. My husband was sold a policy in 2004. He died in May 2013 and in August last year a letter came from CPP explaining that he may be eligible for compensation for mis-selling.

I informed CPP of his death and pointed out that the policy was held jointly. I sent my husband's death certificate and documents proving my identity. Eventually I was told by letter that, if eligible, I would receive a cheque in six to eight weeks. A letter then came addressed to me, but enclosing a cheque payable only to my husband. I had closed his bank account in May 2013. My bank will not accept the cheque.

I spoke to CPP again, saying I was unable to pay the cheque into my account. I was told by a supervisor that I would have to wait a further six to eight weeks for a cheque to be reissued. I have now received a letter from the joint administrator of the compensation scheme saying the reissuing of the cheque could take another eight weeks on top. He adds that this is their final letter in relation to my complaint and says he hopes I am satisfied with the way the matter has been handled! I don't feel I should have to go through such a tortuous process to obtain compensation to which I am entitled. I am 81 and have been left feeling exhausted and frustrated. MA, Somerset.

A. CPP apologises for what it accepts was poor and insensitive handling of this matter. You should have now received its cheque in full payment of the claim. Helen Spivey, CPP's head of investor and corporate relations, said: "The scheme process includes the opportunity ... to claim on behalf of a customer who has passed away. Our priority is to manage claims in these circumstances with empathy, and we appreciate that this is a very sensitive matter and sincerely apologise for any distress to [the reader] as a result of her claim on behalf of her late husband. "

Washing machine row on a non-stop cycle

Q. We bought a washing machine from ISE Ltd in April 2009. The price included a five-year warranty to cover all repairs and parts, and during that time the machine was repaired a few times by our local engineer at no cost.

At the start of April, though, with just a few weeks to run on the warranty, it was clear there was a serious problem. Our usual engineer is not working at present but ISE arranged for another firm to come out. It did an initial repair under the warranty but told us there were further problems requiring extra work. It referred back to ISE, which wrote to inform us that it would not arrange the repairs under the warranty. It blamed this decision on its insurer and sent us a £70 cheque to settle. We obtained a quote for the repair of £177, plus VAT and parts.

We wrote to ISE returning its cheque and stating that we had a binding legal contract with it, not its insurer, which says that the warranty covers repairs and parts. ISE has restated its position. KC, West Yorkshire.

A. Kenneth Watt of ISE said the warranty "was sold and clearly shown as being an insurance-backed warranty, rather than a manufacturer warranty". As such, approval for any claim is decided by the insurer. Under the terms of your purchase agreement, he said, you were only due a £7.50 repayment as it was one month short of being out of warranty. Any further compensation should be sought from the retailer, which should have properly explained the warranty, said Mr Watt. But your understanding was that ISE sold the product and you are convinced the warranty does apply. We suggest you refer this to the Financial Ombudsman.

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