On November 15, 2021, the Reserve Bank has directed Deposit-taking NBFCs (NBFCs-D) with 10 or more branches and Non-Deposit taking NBFCs (NBFCs-ND) with asset size of Rs.5,000 crore and above having public customer interface to appoint Internal Ombudsman (IO) at the apex of their internal grievance redress mechanism within a period of six months from the date of issue of the direction.
The Direction covers, inter-alia, the appointment/tenure, role and responsibilities, procedural guidelines, and oversight mechanism for the IO. All complaints that are partly or wholly rejected by the NBFC will be reviewed by the IO before the final decision of the NBFC is conveyed to the complainant. The IO will not entertain any complainants directly from members of public.
NBFCs not having public customer interface and certain types of NBFCs, viz., stand-alone Primary Dealers (PDs), NBFC – Infrastructure Finance Companies (NBFC-IFCs), Core Investment Companies (CICs), Infrastructure Debt Fund – Non-Banking Financial Companies (IDF-NBFCs), Non-Banking Financial Company – Account Aggregators (NBFC-AAs), NBFCs under Corporate Insolvency Resolution Process, NBFCs in liquidation and NBFCs having only captive customers have been excluded from the requirement to appoint IOs.