The Consumer Duty will not be applied retrospectively to complaints received by it and the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS), the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has emphasised.
The regulator repeated its assertion about the Consumer Duty regime after its Practitioner Panel again voiced fears about it being applied retrospectively.
The question comes after the FOS revealed in December that it was already receiving complaints under the Consumer Duty regulations after the first stage, which applies to active products, went live last July.
However the FCA sought to quieten any concerns as it directly rejected the prospect of any retrospective interventions.
“Both we and the Ombudsman Service are clear that the duty does not apply retrospectively,” the FCA said.
“We work on the basis that firms’ conduct should be judged against the rules and standards that prevailed at the time.
“With the duty now in force, we are working to ensure a shared understanding of requirements. We will use the Wider Implications Framework to be transparent on these arrangements and give stakeholders continued confidence,” it added.
The second phase bringing back book products under the Consumer Duty will be implemented this July.
The Practitioner Panel also highlighted that beyond implementation of the duty, further dialogue was needed between industry and the regulator about the medium and longer-term strategy for shaping the market and making the UK more competitive.
The FCA agreed, adding: “We welcome further engagement where further dialogue would be helpful on how we should develop the longer-term strategy.”