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gezzathorpe

Cahhot cheque clearance period

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I am used to cheques being cleared within 4 days from start to finish. I recently deposited a cheque for a few thousand pounds into my cahoot account using the post office (which is the only way apart from posting the cheque to cahoot) which cahoot provide. The cheque was deposited on 26th June at 9:28am. My account was not credited with the amount until Friday 3rd July, which is one day longer that the 5-day 'norm' stated in cahoot's Ts & Cs. I am still waiting for the cheque to clear which according to cahoot is up to a further 4 working days from what they call 'receipt' which they confirm equates to 'credited to account'. That means the cheque will have taken 10 working days from start to finish, or 14 elapsed days. I have never, ever known a cheque to take so long. It has never happened to a cheque with a value of a few hundred pounds. I wonder if it has anything to do with the amount?

 

I have pointed out to cahoot that the website says that it can take up to 5 working days for a deposited cheque to be credited to an account. I suggested that this was not the same as what they stated in their Ts & Cs, which was up to 5 days to receive, then four days to clear. They confirmed that the two statements were consistent. I have asked six people what they consider 'credited to account' means, and they all thought, like me, that it meant 'money available in account to use'.

 

Watch out foir this! cahoot make their money by 'catching' people during this 4 day clearance period which is not the same as 'credited to account'. They suggested to me that I should not spend funds until they were cleared. This makes sense, but 10 working days!!! Two chequesI wrote three days after depositing the aforementioned cheque into the post office, which I felt was a safe time period, bounced. Whichs means that they both came and went within three days of being deposited by the recipients. There's something not quite right here.

 

Any views from anyone?

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Hang on, you paid it in at the post office so Cahoot would state clearing would begin on receipt of the cheque which as you stated was 3rd July 2009. "Credited to account" is paid into an account. It doesn't mean cleared cheque...for example if it was cash then would it take the same time?


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FSA Waiver on Bank Charges:http://www.fsa.gov.uk/pages/Doing/Regulated/Notify/Waiver/pdf/dir_quart_0709.pdf

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Deposits at the PO are part of cahoot's process, and their choice of method. When I deposited the cheque I got a receipt from the post office confirming receipt. cahoot claim 'receipt' is when they receive the cheque from the PO. So, apparently the PO can sit on the cheque for as long as they wish, and their prime contractor (cahoot) will begin the clearing stage (4 days) once they have received the cheque from the PO.

 

As far as I am concerned, there is one process, the stages of which are

 

Deposit cheque and obtain receipt

Receive cheque (isn't my receipt from the PO proof of this?)

Clear cheque

 

If I write a cheque to someone else, and they deposit it in their bank, any bank, it will run the full cycle in 4 days at the most. It's obvious where the difference lies. The PO must have a service level agreement with cahoot, which ensures that they follow the same timescales, but what on earth could the PO be doing with the cheque for 6 working days, when it travels through internal mail and when it is down the cahoot to clear it anyway? Seems to me all that has to happen is for the PO to pass the cheque on to cahoot via internal mail, which I reckon should be achievable in a day or less.

 

By the way, cahoot reckon that, unless a cheque is cashed, they have no way of chasing it. Which means that no one is tracking it during this mysterious 5 day period. Sounds like they've got a good audit trail!!

Edited by gezzathorpe

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But has this happened before because you made the point about smaller cheques or is it the same thing that has happened?


.

FSA Waiver on Bank Charges:http://www.fsa.gov.uk/pages/Doing/Regulated/Notify/Waiver/pdf/dir_quart_0709.pdf

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It's never happened before, even using the same method of deposit. Cash is quicker of course. The reason I mention the value of the cheque (£6k) is because it's the only thing that's different than all the times before.

 

The other point I should make is that, although it's my fault for telling people to cash their cheques from me three days after depositing mine, I was of a reasonable expectation that my cheque would get in before theirs. But alas! Didn't happen, and it's cost me £60 due to the other cheques bouncing.

 

This is where I started 'conversing' with cahoot about what the website versus the Ts & Cs. The website says 'Cheques deposited can take up to 5 days to be credited to the account'. Since all cheques before this have taken a max. of 4 days end to end, that led me, a layman obviously, to naively think that the money would be in the account and ready to use after 5 days.

 

I am glad I've discovered the cahoot cheque deposit process/period now, as I reckon all other banks would beat it on this one and I know what they can do with their service.

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I did a search on Cahoot and they did used to have a process in place where what you have suggested happened. Furthermore, Cahoot are linked with Abbey yet you cannot pay in over their counters, yet with RBS related companies(natwest/rbs/virgin etc.etc) you can do this which is kinda odd really. I do understand what you mean about the service though. That is one thing that many cahoot reviews said about....cheques. What appears to happen is that the Post Office simply post the cheques to Cahoot rather than you doing it....very odd really.


.

FSA Waiver on Bank Charges:http://www.fsa.gov.uk/pages/Doing/Regulated/Notify/Waiver/pdf/dir_quart_0709.pdf

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I also hope that I can warn other potential customers, and I am sure there will be some as naive as me, do not understand the actual meaning of 'credited to the account' against using a bank where the service level is actually at least 9 days from cheque deposit through to clearance. I can't believe other banks are the same.

 

I also do not undrstand why, on the one hand, cahoot uses the phrase 'credited to the account' ont ehw ebite, then uses 'receive' in the Ts & Cs, when they mean exactly the same thing. I know we're all supposed the read Ts & Cs, but many people are more likely to see the text on the website rather than the Ts & Cs. A cross-reference, at least, would be useful

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I also hope that I can warn other potential customers, and I am sure there will be some as naive as me, do not understand the actual meaning of 'credited to the account' against using a bank where the service level is actually at least 9 days from cheque deposit through to clearance. I can't believe other banks are the same.

 

I also do not undrstand why, on the one hand, cahoot uses the phrase 'credited to the account' ont ehw ebite, then uses 'receive' in the Ts & Cs, when they mean exactly the same thing. I know we're all supposed the read Ts & Cs, but many people are more likely to see the text on the website rather than the Ts & Cs. A cross-reference, at least, would be useful

 

It worth you saying to cahoot that they need to make their terms and conditions clearer since there is only 2 methods of paying in a cheque which is (1) post and (2) through the post office.


.

FSA Waiver on Bank Charges:http://www.fsa.gov.uk/pages/Doing/Regulated/Notify/Waiver/pdf/dir_quart_0709.pdf

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It's good to know I'm not the first to realise this. I think the website should say 'cheques deposited in the PO can take up to 9 days to clear'. I bet I know why they don't say that. The position at the moment is that it has been credited to my account last Friday, so it looks as though I can't touch the money until Thursday of this week, by which time, luckily, no other cheques or direct debits are due.

 

Have you got a suggestion of how I might 'tag' this thread better so it could be picked up by more people?

 

This is the first time I have bothered with a site like this and I have enjoyed it and appreciate your involvement.

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I've spent the tast fews days with numerous emails trying to point this out. They have persistently said that the statement in the website is consistent with the Ts & Cs. I am ex-IBM and have done a lot of work on contracts, Ts & Cs and I know that is a load of rubbish.

 

What they have done is to increase my overdraft for 10 days and will 'review' any charges incurred after the date on which the cheque clears. Very generous!!!

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Having finally received my money in my account after a period from start to finish of 8 working days (14 elasped) there is even more. I have just discovered that 3 cheques have been returned to the payee unpaid and the payee has incurred a charge. I also noticed that all of my direct debit orders have disappeared. This is cahoot's explanation

 

Dear Mr Thorpe

 

Thank you for contacting cahoot in Coventry.

 

Please accept my apologies for any distress this may have caused; it appears that a manual error has occurred in which your credit card closure request was misinterpreted and they have begun the closure of your cahoot current account.

 

As such your card and your chequebook have been blocked. If you have an external account available we can arrange a free of charge CHAPS transfer so you can access the funds.

 

Unfortunately we are unable to reinstate the direct debits as they were cancelled on the 15/7/2009 and would have been received at the external banks. If you have incurred any charges due to this error please send this in to the following complaints department to review for you:

 

Any suggestions on what I do next? Note that it is apparently down to me to go to the Complaints department to review charges incurred as a result of an admitted cock-up by cahoot. Clever stuff huh?

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Having finally received my money in my account after a period from start to finish of 9 working days (14 elasped) between cheque deposit and clearance there is even more. I have just discovered that 3 cheques have been returned to the payee unpaid and the payee has incurred a charge. I also noticed that all of my direct debit orders have disappeared. This is cahoot's explanation

 

Dear Mr Thorpe

 

Thank you for contacting cahoot in Coventry.

 

Please accept my apologies for any distress this may have caused; it appears that a manual error has occurred in which your credit card closure request was misinterpreted and they have begun the closure of your cahoot current account.

 

As such your card and your chequebook have been blocked. If you have an external account available we can arrange a free of charge CHAPS transfer so you can access the funds.

 

Unfortunately we are unable to reinstate the direct debits as they were cancelled on the 15/7/2009 and would have been received at the external banks. If you have incurred any charges due to this error please send this in to the following complaints department to review for you:

 

Any suggestions on what I do next? Note that it is apparently down to me to go to the Complaints department to review charges incurred as a result of an admitted cock-up by cahoot. Clever stuff huh?

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If the payee have incurred bank charges because their cheques bounced then that is nothing to do with cahoot however, they can reinstate the direct debits on your account.


.

FSA Waiver on Bank Charges:http://www.fsa.gov.uk/pages/Doing/Regulated/Notify/Waiver/pdf/dir_quart_0709.pdf

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cahoot say in their note to me (last para) that they are unable to re-instate the direct debits. As you say, I need to check who placed the charge on the recipients of my bounced cheques, but, they, the recipients of my cheques, shjould not be penalised.

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