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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've noticed a few references to referring issues to TMO if you are unable to reach a resolution with a dealer or KCS, having recently taken a black and white case involving another marque to TMO my advice would be not to waste your time.

Firstly the TMO is funded by the motor industry and whether deliberately or not they seem biased in their favour. Secondly the process is biased towards the motor industry as well because you submit your complaint and this is put to the dealer/manufacturer who will then respond. You will not see the whole response from the other party, just some excerpts that the TMO use to justify their ruling and you have no effective right to challenge this ruling or what the dealer/ manufacturer has said. Clearly the dealer/manufacturer are used to the process and expert in forming a response that will satisfy the TMO and in my experience TMO take what the dealer/manufacturer say as fact whilst ignoring evidence submitted by the complainant. Thirdly it is a very slow process as TMO give themselves six months to respond to your initial complaint and something like 90 days for any step after that. In my case it took over a year to get their ruling which was based on a number of falsehoods presented by the manufacturer and took no account of the comprehensive and conclusive proof that I had submitted.

So in my view this is not an effective course of action and we would be better served by spending a few hundred pounds employing a forensic motor engineer to write a report and using this to challenge the dealer/manufacturer
 

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So in my view this is not an effective course of action and we would be better served by spending a few hundred pounds employing a forensic motor engineer to write a report and using this to challenge the dealer/manufacturer.
For all the reasons mentioned in your piece, I believe the best course of action to secure redress is via Citizens Advice and the Small Claims Court. Having said that, if one has access to free legal advice on motoring matters, then that may be an avenue worth exploring.

Much depends on the value of any loss and appropriate reparations as, should the other party wish to play hardball, an expert witness prepared to report on an issue of substance and testify before a court if necessary could prove to be costly. Solid legal advice in the first instance is key.
 

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I've noticed a few references to referring issues to TMO if you are unable to reach a resolution with a dealer or KCS, having recently taken a black and white case involving another marque to TMO my advice would be not to waste your time.

Firstly the TMO is funded by the motor industry and whether deliberately or not they seem biased in their favour. Secondly the process is biased towards the motor industry as well because you submit your complaint and this is put to the dealer/manufacturer who will then respond. You will not see the whole response from the other party, just some excerpts that the TMO use to justify their ruling and you have no effective right to challenge this ruling or what the dealer/ manufacturer has said. Clearly the dealer/manufacturer are used to the process and expert in forming a response that will satisfy the TMO and in my experience TMO take what the dealer/manufacturer say as fact whilst ignoring evidence submitted by the complainant. Thirdly it is a very slow process as TMO give themselves six months to respond to your initial complaint and something like 90 days for any step after that. In my case it took over a year to get their ruling which was based on a number of falsehoods presented by the manufacturer and took no account of the comprehensive and conclusive proof that I had submitted.

So in my view this is not an effective course of action and we would be better served by spending a few hundred pounds employing a forensic motor engineer to write a report and using this to challenge the dealer/manufacturer
I think you will find that all ombudsmen are funded by the area they regulate. FOS certainly are and make fair judgments. The time any complaint takes depends on many factors. Getting the information from retailers being one. Amount of complaints they have to deal with at any one time is another.

Your last point I have put in bold. If they still take no notice. Where do you go then?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I think you will find that all ombudsmen are funded by the area they regulate. FOS certainly are and make fair judgments. The time any complaint takes depends on many factors. Getting the information from retailers being one. Amount of complaints they have to deal with at any one time is another.

Your last point I have put in bold. If they still take no notice. Where do you go then?
You are right that ombudsmen are often funded by the body they regulate but my view of TMO is that it is their processes that lead to a bias in favour of the industry rather than a lack of impartiality, but this is just my personal view based on my own experience of using them, other views are available 🤣.

I haven't had cause to use the FSO so can't comment on their service but I have used one other ombudsman that deals with GDPR and found that despite a clear breach of the regulation they would not uphold my complaint against a local authority because they had said they would change their processes, something three years on they still haven't done :rolleyes: so I guess I do not have a particularly positive opinion of ombudsmen in general.

Its also true that the time taken to get a ruling will vary dependent on a number of factors, however, when I submitted my complaint to TMO I was told up front that it would be at least six month before I heard back from them and it was exactly six months to the day and it was only at that stage that they went on contacted the manufacturer, after that it was 90 days each time they contacted me.

I could go into detail as to why I have formed these opinions but my post was just to warn people that this might be a long drawn out process and however black and white they might believe their case to be they may not get the result they are looking for.

In my own case I was not relying on the TMO ruling as I was using it to support a complaint I had made direct to the Office of the CEO and by the time TMO gave their ruling I had been successful and had a resolution.

As to how else you can resolve issues with dealers or manufacturers I think it might be helpful to remind ourselves who is who in the supply chain, we as owners have no commercial relationship with the manufacturer only the sales department of the dealership we bought our car from and with them for just 12 months. The manufacturer warrants our cars for 7 years but relies and pays approved workshops to do this work on their behalf. We also have no commercial relationship with any service department so we have no contractual clout to rely on with them but they will need paying for any work that is done to our cars, for this reason we are on reliant them to put a good case to the manufacturer on our behalf for warranty work. So for this reason if clear reasoned unemotional argument hasn't worked I would first use my home or car insurance free legal advice, I have found this very helpful in informing me what my rights are and what legal argument I might be able to mention that could give weight to my claim. You can of course speak to CS yourself and put your case to them but in most cases they are likely to rely on the opinion of the workshop, so if this fails you probably need some form of independent expert opinion to give the workshop the case they need to persuade the manufacturer to authorise the work. In many cases such expert opinion is accepted by dealers and manufacturers but if this fails I'm afraid the legal path is all that is left but again if you have legal cover it might cover this and in any case sometime just the threat will be enough to get a result.

Its not a particularly rosy picture I know but in the majority of cases we can enjoy our cars without worrying about any of this but if we do hit an issue it highlights the benefit of keeping your service department on side :giggle:
 

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Clearly you have not had a good time with them. The only thing I could think that would maybe of helped. Is at you said at the end of your 1 piece. Using a 3rd party to give a independent report. If a case is won, this cost would also form part of the settlement.

Nice to see someone take the time to write something like you have with a very reasoned opinion of their assessment of them (y)
 
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