Skip to main content

Discretionary Commission Arrangements

If you borrowed money to finance a motor vehicle before 28 January 2021, there may have been a Discretionary Commission Arrangement between your broker or dealer and finance provider.

What’s a Discretionary Commission Arrangement? An agreement where a finance provider allowed a broker or motor dealer to decide, within an agreed range, what interest rate would be offered to customers.  A payment for arranging the finance was then paid to the broker or motor dealer which was linked to the interest rate.  The amount paid would vary depending on how high or low the interest rate agreed was.

Following concerns about how this type of arrangement could affect customers, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) put a stop to them. This came into effect on 28 January 2021 and led to a high number of enquiries from customers worried they could have paid too much because of a Discretionary Commission Arrangement.

On 11 January 2024, the Financial Conduct Authority announced they’re carrying out a detailed review.  This will look at whether this type of arrangement led to poor practices which have resulted in customers losing out.

We won’t know until the Financial Conduct Authority has completed their review. If you think your agreement with us may have had a Discretionary Commission Arrangement, you can ask us to check.  More information about how to do this can be found in our FAQs.

You could be impacted if:

  • You borrowed money to finance a motor vehicle (for example a car, van, campervan or motorbike) before 28 January 2021. This includes Hire Purchase agreements such as Personal Contract Purchases. 
  • You used a broker or dealer to arrange the finance.

You wouldn’t be impacted if:

  • You borrowed money to finance a motor vehicle on or after 28 January 2021 
  • You used a hire agreement, such as a Personal Contract Hire
  • You used a Northridge unsecured personal loan. This where we paid the money you borrowed into your bank account rather than to a dealer or broker.

As not all Northridge accounts had a Discretionary Commission Arrangement we need to check each agreement individually.

You can ask us by:

  • Calling us on 0800 9170931.  We’re open 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday.
  • Writing to us at Northridge Finance, 1 Donegall Square South, Belfast, BT1 5LR

If you’re calling or writing to us, you’ll need to give the following information to help us find your agreement: 

  • Your full name
  • Your agreement number
  • Number plate of the motor vehicle we financed
  • Your current address & postcode
  • Your date of birth
  • Your address and postcode at the time you had the finance with us (if different)
  • Your name at the time you had the finance with us (if different)

Don’t worry if you don’t have it all. Just give us as much as you can. If we need anything more, we’ll be in touch.

Yes. You’ll need to let us know by sending us an enquiry as outlined in the FAQ above.  This is so we can check your agreement to confirm it had a Discretionary Commission Arrangement.  We can also make sure you’re included when we contact our customers once the Financial Conduct Authority finish their review.

  1. We’ll send you a confirmation to let you know we’ve received your enquiry.
  2. We’ll check the information you’ve given us to see whether any of your agreements with us had a Discretionary Commission Arrangement.
  3. If we don’t have enough information to find your agreement, we’ll get in touch.  We’ll tell you what we need and how you can send it to us.
  4. Once we’ve completed our checks, we’ll let you know if your agreement is impacted or not.
  5. If your agreement is impacted, we’ll treat your enquiry as a complaint.  Once the Financial Conduct Authority publishes the outcome of its review, we’ll be in touch to update you.  More information about complaints is included in the FAQs below.

Once we’ve checked and confirmed your agreement is impacted, we’ll automatically treat your enquiry as a complaint.  There’s no need for you to make a separate complaint.

If, however, you would like to make a complaint now, you can do this by:

  • Calling us free on 0800 917 0931. We’re open from 9.00am to 5.00pm Monday to Friday.  
  • Writing to us at:

Complaints Department
Northridge Finance
5th Floor
1 Donegall Square South


The earliest you could hear back from us with a final response is 25 September 2024.

While they complete their review, the Financial Conduct Authority has made some changes to complaints about Discretionary Commission Arrangements. 

This means:

  • If you make a complaint about a Discretionary Commission Arrangement, we don’t need to respond to you within the usual 8 week time limit. The earliest you could hear back from us with a final response is 25 September 2024.
  • If you’re not happy with our response, you’ll have longer to take your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).

This doesn’t apply to complaints about anything else.  We’ll respond to these within the usual timeframes.

You can ask the Financial Ombudsman Service to look at your complaint. You would normally have to do this within 6 months of getting our final response, but for complaints about Discretionary Commission Arrangements, you’ll have longer. 

This means if we sent you a final response between 12 July 2023 and 10 November 2024 you’ll have 15 months to take it to the Financial Ombudsman Service.

You can find out more about how to do this clicking here.

A Claims Management Company can make a claim for you, but you’ll have to pay a fee or part of any reward you may get. Click here to find out what to expect.

You, or your Claims Management Company, should only contact us once. If we’re contacted more than once, we’ll need to check who to respond to. This could mean it’ll take longer for us to deal with your enquiry.