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can you help me help someone?


trayday
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Hi, later this morning i'm going to a Barclays branch with my local big issue seller to try to get his money back for him and i would really like some help. I'll try to explain.

He had a basic account with the Woolwich which has now merged with Barclays. He is transient homeless not street homeless, anyway. He knew the day his benefit would be paid in and throughout the week he would put his card in the hole in the wall and if anything came out he knew he had something for that day.

 

Then his account was moved to Barclays. on his benefit day he went to get his money out and the cash machine flashed, no funds available. he went into the bank to see what was wrong, he was told he had gone overdrawn on his account. Impossible he said not with my basic account. oh yes said the patronising bank employee, you have exceeded your OVERDRAFT. I dont have one replied the Big issue seller. You do, said the Bank employee, we gave you one and now you're overdrawn and you have bank charges to prove it, we have also charged you £5 per day for the last week ansd a bit while you have been over drawn.

 

To cut a long story short he had no money for the next two benefit paydays, he could not pay his way with the people who let him sleep on their floor and the bank would not help him in anyway shape or form. He told me he has spoken with other sellers who had accounts with thw woolwich and Barclays have done the same to them. They told him he should keep a closer eye on his financies.

 

I am so bloody cross, we are going to try to see a manager today and i'm going to try to convince them to give him his money back, so any help or advice would be really welcome.

Thanks, Trayday

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I am no expert, but I see two aspects to your case, which are probably the route you are already going down:

 

1. Can it be said that the bank has acted unreasonably in changing the terms of trading with your friend by introducing an overdraft facility when there was not one originally and furthermore there is the question of whether the bank took reasonable steps to inform your friend of the change especially bearing in mind your friend's address or lack of?

 

2. There is the forthcoming test case on penalty charges, between the OFT and the major banks, due in court next week I believe. I doubt if you will get the bank to discuss that aspect until the result of the test case is known.

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Just had another thought about item 2 in my previous post.

 

You may be able to insist that the bank deals with your complaint about unfair charges before the test case on the grounds of 'hardship'.

Given the circumstances of your friend, I assume it would fall into the 'hardship' category.

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Sorry to be disjointed in the reply, but I am aware of your time constraints.

 

Additional info:

 

I believe it is the FSA (Financial Services Authority) that has stated that the banks must consider cases of undue hardship immediateley without waiting for the test case.

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Sorry again. Re the last post, not sure if it is the FSA, or the Financial Ombudsman!

 

It's the FSA as part if the waiver given to Barclays Bank.

 

This friend is in genuine hardship and would have a clear case to take forward, even through the Ombudsman who will also look at genuine hardship cases.

 

State this to the bank and that you will report them to the FSA to ask for their waiver to be withdrawn. Unlikely to happen, but at least you can threaten all you like and put the complaint in.

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Hi Tray day

 

Hope this is not too late. First of all, ask to spek to the manager, but be aware that he / she may not see you and you may have to see an advisor. Take with you to the bank a letter of "right of appropriation" (see library or "cant find what your looking for" link in welcome forum)

 

You can use this with the bank to prove that the money they have taken was for priority debts (rent utilities food) and that they had no right to take the money. In all the cases I have helped with this letter usually gets the money out back into the account immediately.

 

Please do not use the argument that they cannot take charges from a benefit as this is not yet finely tuned and may not apply as we originally thought it would.

 

Its a good argument that an overdarft should not have been appied to a basic account and in most cases an agreement / application for an OD should be on file. If this is not the case then the bank had no reason to apply one to the account and should remove it at once and the charges applied should be refunded.

 

Remember to ensure if any charges were taken from his money they need to be refunded to the account and not just taken off the balance sheet along with the OD.

 

Hope this helps, good luck please feel free to contact me if you need anything else

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All advice is based on my experiences. I am NOT qualified and as such cannot be held responsible for any mistakes. If in doubt...get professional help.

If you like what i have said then make me a star!!

Some helpful links

I have been successful in many cases..here are links to some

Housing Act and deposits: http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?266260-Deposit-being-withheld.-Please-advise&highlight=

Against Natwest: http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?278646-N-west-v-Mrsfoot-s-Son.-***WON_ALL-CHARGES-REFUNDED***&highlight=

Against Swift Advances: http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?46576-Me-V-Swift&highlight=

Against B&Q: http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?172878-Me-vs-B-amp-Q&highlight=

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Thank you for your help, I went to meet the young man but unfortunately he did not show up. I guess it maybe due to his lifestyle, I will probably see him on Saturday outside Sainsburys, will have a chat to him then.

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