Refer a financial service or energy market decision to a tribunal

How to refer a decision by a financial services regulator or Ofgem to the Upper Tribunal (Tax and Chancery Chamber).

Financial services decisions

You can use the tribunal if you work in the financial services industry and are penalised by one of the following regulators:

  • Financial Conduct Authority
  • Prudential Regulation Authority
  • Pensions Regulator
  • Bank of England

For instance, you can challenge a decision on:

  • your permission to provide financial services
  • fines for market abuse
  • a disciplinary measure
  • winding up or freezing a pensions scheme

Ask the tribunal if you want to stop the regulator publishing your name until your case has been heard. You will need to give a good reason.

Energy companies and wholesale energy market decisions

You can appeal to the tribunal if your energy company receives an Ofgem fine or penalty for breaking the REMIT wholesale energy market rules.

In Northern Ireland, you can challenge a penalty imposed by the NIAUR (the Authority for Utility Regulation).

The tribunal

Your case will be dealt with by the Upper Tribunal (Tax and Chancery Chamber).

The tribunal is independent and will listen to both sides before making a decision.

How to refer a case to the tribunal

Use the making a reference form and guidance leaflet.

Email or post the form to the tribunal and send a copy to the regulator.

Make sure you explain why you think the regulator’s decision was wrong, and include a copy of its decision notice.

Upper Tribunal (Tax and Chancery Chamber)
5th Floor
Rolls Building
Fetter Lane

DX: 160042 Strand 4

Telephone: 020 7612 9730

Tribunal staff can give you general guidance on how the process works, but can’t give you legal advice.

How your case will be dealt with

The tribunal will:

  • let you know once it receives your form
  • give the regulator 28 days to respond and explain its decision
  • offer you the chance to reply to the regulator’s points

The judge may then decide to:

  • reach a judgment without a hearing, by referring to the paperwork
  • hold a preliminary hearing, to discuss the next steps
  • go straight to the final hearing to consider the case

The tribunal may ask you for more documents or give you other instructions on what to do next.

The tribunal hearing

The tribunal will give you at least 14 days’ notice of any hearing, which will usually be held in London, Manchester or Edinburgh.

The hearing will be attended by:

  • a judge and 1 or 2 other members of the tribunal
  • someone from the regulator
  • your representative, if you have one (eg your lawyer or accountant)

Your hearing will be open to the public, unless you can give the judge a good reason for making it private.

You will be given a chance to:

  • present your case to the tribunal
  • call witnesses to give evidence
  • highlight any important points at the end

The tribunal will usually post you its decision after the hearing.

Appeal against the decision

If you think the tribunal made a mistake in the way it interpreted or applied the law, you can ask for permission to appeal to a higher court:

  • Court of Appeal (England and Wales)
  • Court of Session (Scotland)
  • Court of Appeal (Northern Ireland)

You must appeal within 14 days of receiving the decision, by writing to the tribunal with details of the legal error.

Get legal advice from a solicitor if you need help.

If the tribunal made a mistake

You can challenge the decision if there was a mistake in the way the case was handled (eg you weren’t sent important documents).

To do this, fill write to the tribunal within 14 days of receiving the decision.

List of current cases

New cases are listed on the hearings register.

Previous decisions

Search the decisions database to see how judges made decisions in previous cases.

Legislation and rules

Read detailed rules on how referrals are handled in the Upper Tribunal Procedure Rules.

You can find rules on wholesale energy market cases in:

Published 17 February 2015
Last updated 19 December 2017 + show all updates
  1. Removal of Scotland address

  2. First published.