Brighthouse told to repay £14.8m to customers

Rent-to-own retailer Brighthouse has been told to repay £14.8 million to customers by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) as part of a redress scheme.

An FCA review of the company’s past business practices found issues with some of its “legacy processes”.

Two groups of customers are included in the repayments following the review.

The first group includes customers who didn’t receive a refund of an initial payment when an agreement was cancelled within the first 14 days between April 2010 and April 2017. These customers will receive on average £27.

The second group consists of those who took out an agreement between April 2014 and September 2016, who may not have been assessed “effectively enough” during the affordability checking process. On average, these customers will receive a payment of £147 if the product was returned. If the product was kept, then ownership will be transfered to them.

Hamish Paton
Hamish Paton

Chief executive Hamish Paton said: “We sincerely apologise to those customers who were affected. Our top priority is to ensure that they are reimbursed as soon as possible. We’re absolutely determined that this doesn’t happen again and have made significant improvements over the last 18 months. The FCA recognised this when they confirmed in April that they are minded to authorise our business, subject to specific conditions.”

Brighthouse said it would be sending letters to all customers affected by the end of the year explaining how much they will receive. The company said the number of customers affected is around 213,000.