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
    Basic Account Holder danmoz98

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    Default RBS and Monthly Charge - Options?

    Some time ago my girlfriend opened an account with RBSicon, what doesn't appear to have been made clear was that there was a monthly fee (I guess like Advantage Gold with Natwest?).

    She's never used this account, she's not even put the card in an ATM. It was basically just meant to be a reserve account.

    A few months ago she started receivng letters saying she was overdrawn. She couldn't understand why as she'd never paid anything into the account, nor withdrawn anything from it.

    It was at this point she discovered this account had a monthly fee, which they'd taken, and as there was no money in the account they began applying overdraft charges.

    She's argued the toss with them on the phone before and they refuse to refund anything. As it stands she's overdrawn by 500.

    What is the best course of action here?

    I suggested she write them a letter explaining she's never used the account and that when she opened it there was no mention of a monthly fee. I also suggested she get them to explain what this monthly fee is for at which point she should then argue that as she's not even using the account how can they possibly justify charging her for a 'service' she isn't using.

    Any other suggestions?

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: RBS and Monthly Charge - Options?

    Sadly in opening this account she will have signed for the charge (I believe its a royalties Gold account) which will have been debited from the account.

    The bulk of the fees will be unauthorised overdraft - My advice would be calculate the gold fees and pay them - close the account and then put in a claim regarding the unfair charges.

    Some of the monthly fee is insurance - life insurance and the like - and as she is on risk I doubt you could claim that she isnt using the service - they have provided cover...

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    [COLOR=red]Nat West Charges 1056 [B]WON[/B][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=#ff0000]RBS Charges 3600 [B]WON[/B][/COLOR]
    [COLOR=#ff0000]RBS Unenforceable Loan 18500 [B]Pending[/B][/COLOR]
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  3. #3
    Basic Account Holder Rustvaar Novitiate

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    Default Re: RBS and Monthly Charge - Options?

    Just to throw in my own two cents and hopefully give some decent advice ...

    If your girlfriend wasn't informed of the monthly fee then she might have a claim that she was mis-soldicon the product. However, a double edged sword in that when she signed the paperwork she effectively agreed that she would pay it. Part of the process of opening the account, either in the branch or over the telephone, is to have the full 'benefits' explained - the travel insurance, the discount tickets, eating-out vouchers, etc. and that would have to include the fee being mentioned.

    If she's never used the account, unfortunately that doesn't give her the chance to opt out of paying the fees. When she received her first statement she would have also received an accompanying note telling her the service charge for the period wherein the account had been opened.

    She would have been informed of the overdraft situation within the first month of it occuring (or at least she should have). The overdraft rate is somewhat extortionate, however the fact she is now 500 overdrawn strikes me as very odd as it would have taken just under 10 months to reach that stage if she owned the Royalties Gold account (12.95 p/m @ 29.84% AER) and so the bank will probably put up a fairly strong fight that she received her statements and it was her own duty to act upon the information they supplied.

    If she's using Digital Banking and has opted to work with paperless statements that, unfortunately, still won't help her any. I think your idea is a good one; write a letter - explain your dissatisfaction and ensure you keep a dated log (and a copy of the letter) for each and every piece of correspondence you send and receive. I would also advise that you look outwith the bank for assistance - I'm positive there will be a financial authority that will drag the RBSicon over the coals if they have failed to mention the monthly fee, however it is her word against theirs ...

    They will be able to explain the monthly fees, it's all their in their brochures and pamphlets and the only way you'll really be able to win this one is if you can pin the tail on the donkey of the branch advisor who opened the account and (possibly) failed to mention a key point of the terms and conditions. One of the points however, is the fact that with a Royalties Gold account an interest-free overdraft should be put in place by default. Perhaps ask them why that was never placed on the account?

    Her limited options are;
    Mis-sold the product.
    T&Cs not fully explained.
    Information relating to the account not issued fast enough.
    No interest-free overdraft applied to account.

    Hope this has been of help.

  4. #4
    Basic Account Holder danmoz98

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    Default Re: RBS and Monthly Charge - Options?

    An update.

    She received a lettericon on Saturday saying it was now 550 owed.

    She's phoned them up today and they've cleared it. After countless refusals they've gone ahead and wiped it all.

Reclaim the Right Ltd. - reg.05783665 in the UK reg. office:- 923 Finchley Road London NW11 7PE
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