According to South Africa’s FAIS Ombud Office, an independent dispute resolution office, individuals with complaints related to encryption that occurred after October 19, 2022, can formally submit such complaints on the agency’s website . However, the FAIS Ombud Office insisted that all complaints that occurred before crypto assets were designated as financial products will not be considered and should not be submitted again.
Code of Conduct for Crypto Asset Service Providers
The South African government agency responsible for investigating and resolving complaints in relation to the Financial Advisory and Mediation Services Act (FAIS) recently said it can now «investigate complaints against existing registered financial service providers who offers current money advice.” According to the agency, known as the FAIS Ombud Office, this is possible due to the recent designation of crypto assets as financial products.
In a news article published on its website, the dispute resolution agency said that crypto-related complaints can only be filed against registered financial service providers (FSPs) who must comply with the country’s General Code of Conduct for authorized FSPs. This code requires «relevant disclosure, needs analysis and recommending a product that is appropriate to the person’s needs and circumstances».
Only Three Complaints Filed
However, according to the statements of Thuso Ngwagwe of the agency published by Moneyweb, not all complaints lodged with the FAIS Ombud Office will be considered before the designation of crypto assets of the Financial Sector Transport Authority. In the report, Ngwagwe reiterated the agency’s assertion that it has no jurisdiction.
«This Office dismissed all complaints received before October 19, 2022 regarding investments made in cryptocurrency because we did not have jurisdiction to pay attention to these matters,» said Ngwagwe.
According to Ngwagwe, the Office of the FAIS Ombud received a total of eight complaints related to cryptocurrency during the 2022/23 financial year. However, only “three happened after October 19, 2022 and will [therefore] to consider.” The rest of the complaints will not be considered and cannot be resubmitted, Ngwagwe added.
For individuals with complaints that fall under its jurisdiction, the FAIS Ombud Office recommended visiting its portal and making a formal complaint.
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