|10-04-2008, 03:27 PM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: May 2008
Bank Unfair Overdraft Charges - Please help
I am with Smile Banking (Part of Co-operative bank in the UK).
I went above my overdraft limit, and arranged a repayment plan with them. However, they continue to "forget" that i have, and start charging me 20 pounds PER DAY ($40) for four days, then another 20 just for another reason!
I can never repay my overdraft if these basterds continue this way. All this time i have been repaying and most paying for their service charges.
I am now sure, that England is no longer a free country. At least in a third world country, when i man runs at you with a gun, you know he is an enemy, he's at least an honest enemy. Unlike here.
Sorry if this thread sounds depressing. I am holding on to being positive and using the law of attraction to not even think of it, and be in a positive state of mind. But this needs to be solved.
|10-04-2008, 11:57 PM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2007
You are clearly with the wrong bank.
First of all, before you do anything else, open a "Basic Bank Account" at the somewhere like the Nationwide Building Society. A Basic account lets you pay money in and set up regular payments like standing orders and Direct Debits - both in and out , a cash card which enables you to withdraw money and check your balance at cash machines and any Post Office branch and Internet Banking facilities. But, they won't give you a cheque book, VISA debit card or an overdraft - but you probably won't get this anywhere because your overdraft problems will have created a black mark on your credit. You have to go to your branch to apply. The Nationwide is the safest banking org around at the present, they are not exposed to the current global credit crunch.
Once you have got your Basic Bank Account, start transferring all your financial stuff to the new account. That way, at least you can have enough money for normal living without it all being swallowed by Smile in incorrect charges. (And once you have repaired your credit you can upgrade to the normal current account).
Next - I'm not sure if you are aware, but the Office of Fair Trading took the Banking Industry to court over overdraft charges, and won their case, with the courts ruling that overdraft charges of £40 each time is illegal under current law. The Banks are appealing the decision in the courts, but in the meanwhile you can do the following:
1) write a strong letter of complaint to Smile and address it to the managing director to get them to stop adding charges (don't bother with Customer Services, they are clearly useless). In your letter, threaten to take them to the Banking Ombudsman for breach of the repayment plan agreement you have with them, if they don't sort it out in two weeks. If they still haven't replied in two weeks, then write to the Ombudsman, enclosing copies of all correspondence.
2) You can make a claim for repayment of the charges they have levied on you so far. To find out how to do this, see this article from This is Money (which is the Daily Mail's financial paper). They even have letter templates you can use for your claim. You can also check MoneySavingExpert.com, which is a financial consumer forum - see here for their advice on bank charges.
The ruling on the appeal on bank charges is expected to come through in December, so make sure you've put your claim in before then. You can claim going back six years.
Britain is a free country, and there are plenty of laws against what has been happening to you. Unfortunately, some banks rely on people's ignorance of the law to swindle them. Twas ever thus.
Hope the above helps and good luck.
Last edited by teatree; 10-05-2008 at 12:02 AM.
|10-09-2008, 03:27 AM||#7 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2007
I live in the US, so the policies are different, but the things banks do are tantamount to highway robbery.
I have very often had success getting overdrafts reversed. Call up customer service and ask, and if they say no, ask for a supervisor. If THAT doesn't work, write a letter to the CEO, and if THAT doesn't work, file a claim in Small Claims Court (or the equivalent? If you have one?).
I was wrongly charged $385 in fees by my bank. Again, this is the US, but this short version of a new film really made me feel empowered:
How to Beat the Bank // Current
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