The Ohio Division of Financial Institutions recommends that consumers contact the financial institution involved first to resolve all concerns. If unsuccessful, the Division welcomes written complaints, together with supporting documentation (COPIES), that involve institutions regulated by this office. The complaint must be received in writing before moving forward.
Please note, the Division does not regulate all institutions doing business, or headquartered, in Ohio. The Division encourages consumers to verify the appropriate regulatory agency prior to filing a complaint. However, if the Division receives a complaint that involves an institution not regulated by this office, the complaint will be referred to the correct agency.
It is important to understand that the Division will make every effort to help address consumer complaints through informal mediation; however, there is no guarantee that the matter can or will be resolved through the enforcement authority of the Division. Complaints are important as they allow the Division to identify patterns of unfair or deceptive practices that may result in further action.
What the Division cannot do
To avoid any confusion or frustration regarding what the Division can do, you should understand that our authority is statutorily limited. The Division cannot:
- Act on behalf of a consumer in a legal manner
- Recover lost funds or pursue financial or other personal remedies on behalf of a consumer.
- Provide guidance to determine what course of action to take.
- Determine a consumer's rights against an institution.
- Serve as an ombudsman or advocate for a consumer or financial institution.
- Conduct detailed investigations of an individual complaint.
- Compel a response from entities that are not regulated or licensed by this office.
- Offer opinions on issues of factual dispute.
- Handle a complaint in litigation or that has been resolved by the court system.
- Investigate customer service complaints.
- Resolve complaints that result from an institution's internal policies and procedures, which may not be governed by state or federal laws or regulations.
- Suggest a financial institution to a consumer.
- Share the outcome or formal action stemming from the Division's review or investigation.
- Provide any information as to the financial or managerial soundness of a financial institution.
- Provide any ratings or information discovered in the examination process.
How to file a complaint
- Write a letter or complete the Division's complaint form.
- Letters should include your name, email and/or mailing address, contact information, the name of the financial institution, details of the complaint, and desired resolution.
- Email, mail or fax a written letter or completed complaint form to the Division.
- Email to email@example.com
- Fax to (614) 220-7124
- Mail to:
Ohio Division of Financial Institutions
Office of Consumer Affairs
77 South High Street, 21st Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
- Please remember to include copies of supporting documentation related to the complaint.
List of documents
Documents are an important part of the Division's review. Here is a list of documents you should consider including, when applicable (copies):
- Loan agreement/contract
- Correspondences (e.g. letters, emails, text messages, etc.)
- Canceled checks
- Payment/transaction history
- Bank or loan statements
- Reports (e.g. credit, police, identity theft, etc.)
What to expect during the complaint process
- Complaints are processed in the order they are received.
- Once the complaint is processed, an acknowledgment letter will be mailed or emailed.
- To ensure both parties have an opportunity to be heard, a copy of the complaint will be forwarded to the institution involved for review and a response.
- Generally, the financial institution will provide a response directly to you within 20 days of receipt. A copy of the complaint will also be provided to the Division.
- Time allowed may vary depending on the nature and complexity of the complaint.
- Additional time may be granted upon request.
- The Division will review the complaint and response to determine if the response resolves or addresses the concerns expressed in the complaint.
- A closing letter, documenting the resolution or conclusion of the complaint, will be mailed or emailed.
- If the response does not satisfy your concerns, you may consider pursuing resolution through private legal counsel, legal aid, mediation or arbitration.
In all cases, you are free to pursue other remedies including consultation with private legal counsel or action in a court of law.