Marc Gander - The Consumer Survival Handbook

A 220 page introduction to all things consumer related by our own BankFodder.

Includes energy companies, mobile phone providers, retailers, banks, insurance companies,debt collection agencies, reclaim companies, secondhand car sellers, cowboy garages, cowboy builders and all the rest who put their own profits before you.


Patricia Pearl - Small Claims Procedure - A Practical Guide

An excellent guide for the layperson in how to use the County Court - a must if you are intending to start a claim.

£19.99 + £1.50 (P&P)

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  1. #1

    Red face Benefits & Charges

    Hi...I am on benefits (Incapacity Benefit/Long Term Sick) and NatWest have been taking bank charges off me for times I have gone overdrawn or had a direct debiticon returned.

    All this week I have been looking up this subject due to the fact that at the beggining of the week they took 250 in charges from my 398 Incapacity Benefit...leaving me with very little to live on for the rest of the month (I have three weeks to go before my next payment)

    I contacted Financial Service Ombudsmanicon who will send the bank a letter on my behalf but this will take up to eight weeks and doesn't help me right now!

    I found the information about the Social Security Administration Act 1992 stating banks cannot take charges from benefits but I need to know if this refers to the whole of the UK or just Scotland, also a direct link to this information (full legal jargon) would be appreciated.

    Also after speaking to someone at my local CAB they seem to think the banks are in the right to take charges out of benefits as there is no I am more confused then ever. I will point out I am in South Wales, UK as sometimes laws are different.

    I did go into the bank and speak to a representative, the meeting went well. I put my points across stating I was on benefits & in financial hardship and that the taking of charges can induce a knock on effect of which I would never be able to recover...hence putting me into more debt & then the bank would still not get their money, ie if I don't have it they can't have it (in not so many words). My letter is to be passed up to their head offices in Edinbourough and hopefully I should hear back from them in 4-8 weeks time. The person who helped me also said they will look into trying to get one of the charges refunded (I am personally hoping for the 114 one but I bet it will be the 38 they refund instead).

    So at the moment I am twiddling my thumbs wondering what I should do now...I have borrowed money from a relative, which I will have to pay back but even then I don't know if it is enough and am dreading going into the red again and incurring more charges!

    Should I get in touch with the DWP and tell them? I don't want to take more money of the state as I feel what I get is enough for someone in my situation (luckily I don't have a massive family to feed, I still have bills/direct debits but I don't smoke, drink or go out so I should be financially secure - it is only when I go overdrawn for a day or so that the trouble starts)

    Anyway, I was just wondering if anyone else has been in my situation and what they did about it...also was interested if anyone got their money back from NatWest...

    All the best for now,

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  2. #2

    Default Re: Benefits & Charges

    Hi Crystal.

    Im really sorry to hear about your circumstances.
    I have a brother in a similar situation and it breaks my heart that these nobs can ruin so many peoples lives.

    I wont claim for one second to know what im talking about here, but i have found this and hope it helps.
    If not, please try to be patient as im sure somebody much more knowladgeable than me will be along soon, if not i will go banging on a few doors.

    Please keep us informed as to how things are going.
    I will watch with interest.
    Good Luck.


    I Wish you everything you wish yourself.


    NatWest Claimed 1,639. Accepted 1,344.
    Natwest Paid me again as GOGW 1,656. Yes they can have it back if they say please.
    Barclays 1 Claimed 1,260. Won by default. Paid in full
    Barclays 2 Claimed 2,378. Won by default. Paid in full
    Birmingham Midshires. Claimed 2,122. Accepted 2,075.


  3. #3

    Default Re: Benefits & Charges This thread might prove useful reading. All the best, Sally

    If my advice has been helpful tip the scales

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  4. #4

    Default Re: Benefits & Charges

    The Social Security Adminstration Act applies also in England and Wales. However, it has no relevance to bank charges. The charges referred to under s.187 relates to a legal charge in the sense of attachment eg in the way how a legal charge is placed on property to secure debts. A bank charge is not a charge in this legal sense. The word charge is simply another name for a fee.

    S.187 has greater relevance in Scotland because creditors can apply for a bank arrestment which places a legal charge on the whole contents of the bank account. Therefore s.187 can be used to prevent the arrestment affecting any money which derives from benefits. Bank arrestments do not exist in England and Wales.

    You are probably better off going the Ombudsmanicon route rather then through the courts as this will resolve things quicker, although, unfortunately unless your bank is exceptionally sympathetic there is no quick resolution method.

    Best wishes


  5. #5

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