Sometimes you might get into a situation in which financial problems bother you but you don’t know where to go in order to get rid of them. But if that happens in Korea, you don’t have to worry because Consumer Finance Service Center is there for you! Consumer Finance Service Center, in which consumer service functions from Financial Services Commission and Financial Supervisory Service are integrated, is a one-stop on-line and off-line counselor that helps you with any financial issues and has them processed. Easy enough to access, Consumer Finance Service Center homepage is linked with Financial Services Commission and Financial Supervisory Service homepages and can be searched in any Korean search engines, and pressing 1332 will get you connected with one of counselors on the phone.
1 Consumer Finance Service Center in Seoul
2 Homepage http://www.fcsc.kr
Main roles of Consumer Finance Service Center are:
- Authorization & approval (registration and report)
Counseling for establishment and management of financial company
- Authentic interpretation (no action letter)
Counseling for interpreting finance-related-laws
- Information disclosure
Disclosure of information retained by supervisory agencies
- Civil petition submission
Counseling for complaints and difficulties in financial matters
Consumer Finance Service Center, in the past, was separated in functions and each site couldn’t provide one-stop solution for consumers. So consumers usually had difficulties in deciding where to go and understanding how their matters were being processed. In addition, consumers sometimes had to suffer from inconvenience of wandering around many agencies because Financial Services Commission’s and Financial Supervisory Service’s service counters were separated. In order to solve these problems and to keep pace with growing demands in services, a new service system was established as of 2008 August, integrating all financial related issues in one service center and also enabling processing of most consumer services on-line.
3 Counseling Counters
Now, let’s see main characteristics of the new Consumer Finance Service Center.
First of all, overall financial administrative services are now available on-line. As you know, Korea is a country with powerful IT infrastructure, so that regardless of location, most Koreans now can easily use services from Consumer Finance Service Center. Tasks that require measures from financial authorities, such as authorization & approval, registration & report, and authentic interpretation, can be requested on the homepage. For general petition, information disclosure, and civil proposal, which were separately processed in FSC and FSS homepages, they can now be submitted in one system. And because authentic interpretation for financial laws and no action letters (‘No Action Letter’ is a system in which if a financial company is not sure whether particular actions that they are planning to do violate laws, the company can request a prior judging to financial authorities and get answer) are hard for most people to understand and apply in their situations, Consumer Finance Service Center provides examples of interpretation on the homepage and systematically manages them to be easy-to-find for those who need them.
Secondly, tracking service is provided. From registration and report to result notification, all procedures are told to clients. So the clients can get information of their requests in every step through internet, e-mail, and text message. And this tracking service is also applied to off-line requests.
Thirdly, RM (Relationship Manager) system was adopted to provide customized service in every step. So even before submitting requests clients can contact their RM and get detailed information. Upon submission, RM acts as a guardian or a liaison between clients and divisions in charge to facilitate the tasks. This might seem interesting and useful because a system cannot always meet everyone’s demands but this personnel-oriented system can supplement these shortcomings.
Last but not least, General Support Center for Private Loan Difficulties was established as of 2009 December. Formerly operated as Counseling Center for Private Loan Difficulties but with limited functions such as just counseling and informing police agency, this new support center takes synthetic measures so that just one call or one visit to Consumer Finance Service Center should be enough to solve the problem. National Police Agency, Korea Asset Management Corporation, and Credit Counseling and Recovery Service are all involved, and an officer is dispatched from National Police Agency and work in the same office to handle with the difficulties.
4 Civil Petition Counseling Service Team
Consumer Finance Service Center is conducting its own roles and at the same time functioning as a hub for those with financial problems by mediating them with appropriate agencies or divisions and constantly providing feedbacks between each other. Beside all these functions, Consumer Finance Service Center is always endeavoring to come up with better system and service to offer favorable financial conditions to everyone in Korea.