(29 August 2017, Hong Kong) – The Financial Dispute Resolution Centre (“FDRC”) today announced the consultation conclusions on “Proposals to Enhance the Financial Dispute Resolution Scheme” (“Proposals”) and a series of service enhancements.
The consultation exercise on the Proposals, which aimed to enhance the service scope, accessibility and flexibility of the Financial Dispute Resolution Scheme (“FDRS”), was conducted in the 4th quarter of 2016. A total of 32 written submissions were received from a wide spectrum of stakeholders including industry associations representing the financial institutions and/or individuals from the financial services industries, institutions of consumer protection and investor education, relevant professional bodies and government department, chambers of commerce, individuals and other organisations.
Professor Teresa Cheng Yeuk-wah, the Chairman of the FDRC, thanked the respondents for their comments and the stakeholders for their support and announced the results of the consultation in the press conference, “Taking into account all the views and with further deliberations, we have adopted most of the proposals, with some necessary revisions.”
The service enhancements are classified into two broad categories. The first category involves expanding the Intake Criteria of the Terms of Reference (“ToR”): (i) to raise the maximum claimable amount; (ii) to extend the limitation period; (iii) to enlarge the scope of eligible claimants to cover small enterprises; and (iv) to accept applications for claims which are under current court proceedings.
The second category enables the parties involved to mutually agree to refer claims that exceed the amended Intake Criteria in terms of maximum claimable amount and/or the limitation period to the FDRC. Further, if the Eligible Claimant agrees, the Financial Institution may refer the financial dispute and/or lodge a counterclaim to the FDRC. On the basis of mutual agreement for cases exceeding the amended Intake Criteria, the parties could opt for “mediation first, arbitration next”, “mediation only” or “arbitration only” approach in dispute resolution at the FDRC.
In light of the above enhancements, there are related changes in service fees, procedures and implementation issues.
Professor Cheng added, “with the implementation of these conclusions, the FDRC would be able to provide our enhanced services to the users in a more flexible way to cater to their needs and at the same time better utilise our resources, so as to achieve the FDRC’s mission and vision and benefit the community at large.”
The amended ToR is expected to take effect from 1 January 2018, except for the implementation of the terms in relation to small enterprises, which will be effective from 1 July 2018.
For details of the Consultation Conclusions, please visit the FDRC website:
- END -