Mumbai, February 24, 2018

If the NBFC rejects the complaint or does not respond within a month, the customer can approach the Ombudsman

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Friday brought non-banking financial companies (NBFC) under an Ombudsman Scheme, by which an aggrieved person can file a complaint against an NBFC.

The scheme, for now, will cover NBFCs that take deposits and will later include those with an asset size of Rs 1 billion and above with a customer interface.
The scheme will not be applicable to infrastructure-related NBFCs and NBFCs under liquidation.

According to the RBI, there are 168 deposit-taking NBFCs out of the more than 11,500 registered with the regulator.

There can be complaints about interest payment, deposits, cheques, or “undue” charges.  Complaints can also be raised for not intimating customers in regional languages they understand.

The customer has to first complain to the NBFC. If the NBFC rejects the complaint or does not respond within a month, the customer can approach the Ombudsman.

“The scheme will provide a cost-free and expeditious complaint redress mechanism relating to deficiency in services of NBFCs covered under the scheme,” said the central bank. The RBI, at the Monetary Policy press conference, had said there would be an ombudsman scheme for NBFCs, following the success of the banking ombudsman scheme. “Since the NBFCs’ complaints were increasing, and there is no redress mechanism, it has been decided that we will have a scheme for the non-banking financial sector also," said RBI Deputy Governor B P Kanungo.

There will be an NBFC Ombudsman in Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai, and New Delhi, and will handle complaints of customers in their respective zones.

The scheme provides for an appellate mechanism in which the complainant and NBFC can appeal against the decision of the Ombudsman.

The Ombudsman will submit annual reports to the RBI Governor on June 30 every year.

[The Business Standard]