The financial advice ombud has awarded relief of R60.8m over the past financial year to consumers who complained about financial services and products, up from R58m the year before. In its annual report released on Friday – the last under the auspices of the replaced Financial Services Board (FSB) – the office of the Financial Advisor and Intermediary Services (FAIS) Ombud said that despite challenges and a slight decrease in the number of complaints received, it viewed the increase in the actual rand value of relief awarded to consumers as a sign that South Africans have faith in the ombud and understand the value of using the service to access justice. In the year under review, the ombud resolved 10,452 complaints, of which 2,799 were referred to other ombuds or adjudicators, 6,303 were dismissed and 1,400 were settled. Most complaints were once again directed at short-term insurers, with 3,243 complaints. This was followed by long-term insurance complaints (3,100) and investments...

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