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Issue 19 - November 2014

The FOS Approach to excluding disputes


Under the FOS Terms of Reference (TOR), we can refuse to consider a dispute that is normally within our jurisdiction, if we decide that this is appropriate in the circumstances.

The decision to exclude a dispute will be made by FOS. We can decide to exclude a dispute whether or not we have been asked to do so by an FSP. We will make sure that we have enough information about the facts of a dispute and the issues involved, before making a decision about whether to exclude the dispute.

The TOR sets out five reasons why we may decide to exclude certain disputes, however we do not have to exclude every dispute of this kind. We can also exclude a dispute for other reasons not contained in the TOR. We will not readily exercise our discretion to exclude a dispute. We will only exclude a dispute in cases where there are convincing reasons to do so.

All decisions to exclude disputes are made by experienced FOS staff at the earliest opportunity, to avoid unnecessary costs and delays.

You can read more about our Approach to excluding disputes here.

Visit to see all the available FOS Approach documents.