There is no battle more lonely and one-sided than the one where an individual customer pursues a complaint against a mega-corporation like a bank, telecom company or airlines.
You have to find the right place to begin the complaint process and then navigate it through a system that is often designed to make you give up and go away. If your complaint is dismissed, you’ve got to find a way to escalate the matter.
A U.K.-based company called Resolver has just launched a free website in Canada that is designed to help people get their complaints resolved. Resolver doesn’t actually investigate your complaint. Instead, it guides you through the complaint process for individual companies. The idea is to set expectations and reduce the gap between what the customer wants and what the company is likely to offer.
Resolver has been adding companies to its database and already includes banks, telecom companies, retail stores and restaurants. The website will explain your rights to you in making a complaint, help you document your complaint and create a case file for you.
Resolver works on the concept that companies want to address complaints and reduce the brand-damaging aspects of people airing their grievances on social media. Resolver generates revenue not from users, but from companies who buy the data it collects on complaint handling. It has no stake in any financial settlement you might receive.
More than 2.5 million people have used Resolver in the past. It’s worth a try if you’re fighting a lonely battle to get your complaint against a big corporation heard.
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Rob’s personal finance reading list…
The RRSP tax trap and other myths
Here’s a well-chosen list of five common myths about registered retirement savings plans. First up: It’s pointless to invest in an RRSP because you will have to pay your savings back in taxes when you retire.
How to make flying economy more tolerable
Consumer Reports offers some useful tips for wringing the maximum comfort out of economy airline seats.
Dollar-cost averaging is better than you think
Dollar-cost averaging means making regular investments into stocks or funds, regardless of market conditions. Here’s a detailed analysis of how DCA beats an alternative strategy of putting money into stocks only after big dips.
Is a portfolio of stocks cheaper than ETFs?
Technically, yes. But can the portfolio of stocks beat the returns of ETFs? That’s what really matters. It’s worth noting that most mutual fund managers can’t beat their benchmark indexes consistently over the long term.
Today’s financial tool/app
There’s plenty of helpful money advice online, but a lot of is from financial companies hoping to sell you their products. Here’s a database of unbiased information on money from Chartered Professional Accounts Canada. There are sections for adults, seniors and new Canadians.
Q: Is it possible to stop CPP and/or OAP once a person has started it, and then to restart later? Someone told me you could elect to stop receiving your monthly cheque and then repay every penny you had received up to the stop date, and then restart again at a later date in order to receive the higher payouts available to those who start later in life. Is this true?
A: I asked pension consultant Doug Runchey of DR Pensions Consulting about this. He said the answer is yes. “You can cancel either CPP and/or OAS as long as you make the request to cancel in writing and within six months of receiving the first payment. You then must repay all benefits received within a further period of six months from the cancellation date. You could then reapply for either/both at whatever later date you wished.”
Do you have a question for me? Send it my way. Sorry I can’t answer every one personally. Questions and answers are edited for length and clarity.
John Stapleton, an expert on retirement planning on a low income, is interviewed in this podcast. His point is that low-income people are badly served by traditional retirement advice.
What I’ve been writing about
- An increasingly cashless world is forcing banks to improve the penalty box ambiance of their branches
- Millennials want help affording houses – here’s what the government should do
- The 2019 Globe and Mail online brokerage ranking – 20th annual edition (for Globe Unlimited subscribers)
More Carrick and money coverage
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