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    • If you are buying a used car – you need to read this survival guide.
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    • Hello,

      On 15/1/24 booked appointment with Big Motoring World (BMW) to view a mini on 17/1/24 at 8pm at their Enfield dealership.  

      Car was dirty and test drive was two circuits of roundabout on entry to the showroom.  Was p/x my car and rushed by sales exec and a manager into buying the mini and a 3yr warranty that night, sale all wrapped up by 10pm.  They strongly advised me taking warranty out on car that age (2017) and confirmed it was honoured at over 500 UK registered garages.

      The next day, 18/1/24 noticed amber engine warning light on dashboard , immediately phoned BMW aftercare team to ask for it to be investigated asap at nearest garage to me. After 15 mins on hold was told only their 5 service centres across the UK can deal with car issues with earliest date for inspection in March ! Said I’m not happy with that given what sales team advised or driving car. Told an amber warning light only advisory so to drive with caution and call back when light goes red.

      I’m not happy to do this, drive the car or with the after care experience (a sign of further stresses to come) so want a refund and to return the car asap.

      Please can you advise what I need to do today to get this done. 

      Many thanks 
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    • Housing Association property flooding. https://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/topic/438641-housing-association-property-flooding/&do=findComment&comment=5124299
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    • We have finally managed to obtain the transcript of this case.

      The judge's reasoning is very useful and will certainly be helpful in any other cases relating to third-party rights where the customer has contracted with the courier company by using a broker.
      This is generally speaking the problem with using PackLink who are domiciled in Spain and very conveniently out of reach of the British justice system.

      Frankly I don't think that is any accident.

      One of the points that the judge made was that the customers contract with the broker specifically refers to the courier – and it is clear that the courier knows that they are acting for a third party. There is no need to name the third party. They just have to be recognisably part of a class of person – such as a sender or a recipient of the parcel.

      Please note that a recent case against UPS failed on exactly the same issue with the judge held that the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 did not apply.

      We will be getting that transcript very soon. We will look at it and we will understand how the judge made such catastrophic mistakes. It was a very poor judgement.
      We will be recommending that people do include this adverse judgement in their bundle so that when they go to county court the judge will see both sides and see the arguments against this adverse judgement.
      Also, we will be to demonstrate to the judge that we are fair-minded and that we don't mind bringing everything to the attention of the judge even if it is against our own interests.
      This is good ethical practice.

      It would be very nice if the parcel delivery companies – including EVRi – practised this kind of thing as well.


      OT APPROVED, 365MC637, FAROOQ, EVRi, 12.07.23 (BRENT) - J v4.pdf
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Halifax Credit Card Punitive charges and interest increase

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Excellent, i hope we get to hear how she gets on. If you get any more updates, please post.



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Thanks Phantom. I can hardly wait!!!!






Please note opinions given by rory32 are offered informally as a lay-person in good faith based on personal experience. For legal advice, you must always consult a registered and insured lawyer.

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  • 3 years later...

Hi there

I frequently transfer money from my German bank account to my UK account with the Halifax.

The German bank uses the SEPA system / Single Euro Payments Area system which has around 33 members within Europe and to which the UK is also signed up.

I used to get the amount credited to my Halifax account in full (according to latest exchange rate) with no fees for this.

All of a sudden I noticed I was getting less Sterling for the Euro amounts and when I investigated further I found out that the Halifax now charges a fee for incoming Euro SEPA payments (£2.- per transaction for amounts less than £100 and I think it was £7.- per transaction for amounts over £100.-)

However, I have also been informed that this is in breach of European law.

The SEPA money transfer system means all electronic payments are now considered domestic, and a difference between national and intra-European cross border payments does not exist.

Based on this the European Parliament mandated that a bank charge the same amount for SEPA credit transfers (which may be cross border) as they charge for domestic credit transfers.

So a bank can't charge more for a SEPA transfer than they do for a domestic transfer. As the Halifax doesn't charge for domestic transfers they are not allowed to charge for SEPA ones either as they are considered domestic as well now. (EU regulation 2560 limits the pricing of cross border transactions)


Furthermore all SEPA transfers have to be credited in full to the receiving account. Charges (if any) have to be shown separately. Halifax doesn't do that either. They just credit a reduced amount to the account which also has their fee taken out.


When I phoned them I was told as Halifax is a big bank they wouldn't break any lawas and I was wrong.

When I asked for their complaints procedure I was told not to bother as they would just tell me the same. When I pointed out I had to go through their complaints procedure before I could take the matter to the FOS I was assured the FOS would side with the Halifax as well and it would be a waste of my time.

When I insisted on speaking to someone in the complaints department I was put on hold and left there for about 1/2 hour until I gave up and put the phone down.

I have since put my complaint in writing.

Has anybody got similar expeiences with Halifax or SEPA transactions ?

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Haven't had a reply yet, but was expecting another incoming SEPA transfer from Germany which hasn't arrived.

When I checked with my German bank they said they tried to do the transfer but it bounced as apparently there is a

'block' on my details from the English side. They cannot send the money.

They said they do not know why and will try again. It may be a temporary technical problem, but if the problem persists

they cannot do the transfer.

I wonder whether this has been done on purpose by the Halifax because I complained about their charge.

Wonder whether that would be allowed without telling me, I mean just witholding that service from me and stopping me from receiving money into my account.

I actually need that money, so wonder whether that is lawful ?

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  • 3 weeks later...

Got a letter from Halifax in response to my letter of complaint.

Basically they are saying I am wrong and the EU law only regulates the middle bank, i.e. the coresponding middle bank in the Eu transfer isn't allowed to charge the Halifax but Halifax in turn can charge me, as it is in their Terms and Conditions.

Basically I have never read such utter nonsense as the EU law regulates the charging regime towards the end consumer and not the charging regime between banks.

They also insist a SEPA transfer is a international transfer when in fact EU law states it is to be considered domestic within the SEPA members (which includes the UK), which is why they are not allowed to charge more for a SEPA transfer than they do for a domestic one, it is suposed to be the same now.

Will have to take to Ombudsman now.

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  • 8 months later...

hello, I am exactly in the same situation...do you have any updates? did you report it to the ombudsman? if yes has it been solved yet?

my bank is barclays and not only they charge 6 pounds every now and then (not always, but randomly) on the bank transfers I receive (SEPA credit transfer in euros from EU country to my euro account in the UK) they also charge between 15 and 40 pounds (online 15 and 40 over the phone, face to face etc.) for making a SEPA transfer....whilst I think this is against the law and in breach of the regulation 924/2009...I would like to share some experiences and/or join the forces to go against this robbery...thank you

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Hi there

I didn't post anymore updates as there weren't any responses and thought there was no interest in the forum due to this being a bit of a 'niche' problem.

Yes, I did take it to the Ombudsman and got a lousy service.

At first he agreed with the bank and in his response he basically only copied and pasted what the bank wrote to me in their first response letter,( he copied word by word by the way) . Going on about middle banks etc

When I pointed out to him that this was 'off topic' and had nothing to do with the SEPA issue and subsequently sent him a copy of the European regulation all this is based on, he apologized and stated he didn't realize this and only at that point did he take the time to read up about the European regulation !

After I provided the information ! I thought an Ombudsman would do that oout of their own initiative but how wrong I was. All they did was read the letter of the Halifax, sided with them and copied thier argument word by word.

Anyway, it was all to no avail anyway, even after reading the European regulation he had to side with the bank, as England is not in the Euro Zone and for countries in the SEPA zone but outside the Eurozone there is a clause that allows those banks to charge a 'commission' for changing the incoming Euro payment into their local currency and that is what these banks are using to levy these charges. It is not a fee, but when challenged it is then quickly called a 'commission'. And there is no limit on what a bank can charge for a commission. Same with the outgoing payments. Halifax for example charges £2.- for any incoming payment and £9.- for outgoing ones as long as it is done online. Again it is apparently a commission for changing pounds into Euro, as within SEPA the corresponding currency is always Euro. I have no idea why they charge a higher commission for outgoing than for incoming payments, as it should be same as it is the same service (changing money). Basically they charge £2.- commission for changing Euro into Pounds and £9.- commission for changing Pound into Euro. Why there is a difference I don't know. But I know it is pointless to challange it. The banks will get away with it and we will be paying whatever they wish to charge. There is always a legal loophole they will slither through.

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P.S. if you receive a lot of Euro payments you can try the HSBC as they don't charge for incoming Euro payments sent by SEPA, their exchange rate is just a bit less favourable but there is no separate charge for it. They do however charge for sending money (£9.-)

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thank you for your reply,

I was quite sure the ombudsman is not help at all and that there is small knowledge over the issue...but if you consider eur to eur account (no conversion from gbp to eur or from eur to gbp) I do not see how they can do the loophole...the EC regulation is very, very clear... they cannot charge commision on the arrival of the money and they cannot charge more than a domestic payment (in UK is zero)

You mention UK in not in the Eurozone, ok, but it is in the EU and also in the EEA...and the regulation 924/2009 is binding and needs no approval from the single countries...

in fact even other countries (like switzerland) which are not in the erozone, neither in the EU (but only in the EEA) have complied, even if not obliged to do so...

I think we should go straight to the FSA because this behaviour must me sancionated and a penalty should arise from the FSA to the banks who do not comply

if you want I can give you firther evidence of that

I have also seen that the HSBC is not charging now (as well as barclays only on "offers" i.e. new account opening) but I still wonder why they can charge for outgoing SCT...

thank you for your help

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There are some countries (like Sweden for example) who have agreed to put their currency on the same level as the Euro, so the legislation applies to Swedish banks in full although they are not in the Eurozone, but this is because the Swedish government agreed to do so.

England did not do anything like this so UK banks can use the commission clause to levy charges, but not all of them do. (As for example the HSBC does not and I think the Yorkshire Bank doesn't either for Euro amounts up to £100.- equivalent)

But I do agree with you this should not be the case if you have an actual Euro account as there is no currency exchange needed. :???:

And according to the Ombudsman this is the only charge that can be levied and that is allowed as per the European legislation : A commission fee for changing the money.

Have you asked your bank about it ?

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yes, I have asked the bank...on the first occasion they gave me the money back, on this second occasion they are saying they are authorized to do so...this is the problem...I have received their final word about it and they told me the only way is to go to the ombudsman (but I believe I can go to the FSA as well...) it is not for the 6 pound charge obviously, but it is a matter of principle... I also agree with you as the fee or commission to the GBP trasnfer or money exchange (they can actually do that not because of the exchange, but because the trasnfer is not in euros only at some point...example: if you transfer euro from a gpb account (the instructions are to send euros) they cannot charge you more than...(it is within the 924 regulation) they can charge what they want for the exchange, but they cannot charge for the trasnfer (more than a domestic transfer in eur)

also please note when you say Uk did not agree to extend (like Sweden) you are right...but this applies only to payment in Sterling (and not also to payment in euro, which they must adhere to, since the regulation is binding and immediately applicable to all the states within EU.... so there is no need or possibility for the UK not to adhere to the regulation (wilst the option to extend, to opt-in, is let to and intended to anly with regards to GBP transactions....)

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direct link to the relevant European legislation

It all sounds so great until you get to the one sentence in Article 3, paragraph 4

This Regulation shall not apply to currency conversion charges.


And that is what banks in the UK rely on. And that one only.

However, if you have a currency account in Euro I can't see how they can rely on it as no conversion takes place. So in your case it may well be worth taking it further

Edited by The Phantom
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yes, I have asked the bank...on the first occasion they gave me the money back, on this second occasion they are saying they are authorized to do so...this is the problem)


Did they specify why they think they are authorized to do so ? You obviously told them they are not authorized due to current European legislation. And then they said they are authorized...based on what ? In my case the Halifax claimed it had something to do with Middle Banks , Clearing Houses etc which the Ombudsman then copied and pasted in his response to me which turned out to have nothing to do with it at all. But what excuse did they use in your letter ?

The problem with the FSA is that they don't take on individual cases or do they ? I can't remember... :???:

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Did they specify why they think they are authorized to do so ? You obviously told them they are not authorized due to current European legislation. And then they said they are authorized...based on what ? In my case the Halifax claimed it had something to do with Middle Banks , Clearing Houses etc which the Ombudsman then copied and pasted in his response to me which turned out to have nothing to do with it at all. But what excuse did they use in your letter ?

The problem with the FSA is that they don't take on individual cases or do they ? I can't remember... :???:


they said that :

"the remitter has not paid all the charges"

"the remitter choosed to split the charges"

but since the remitter is mysenf, and I do know that in a SEPA transfer you cannot choose to split the charges (since there are no charges) like in international exEU transfers (OUR_SHA_BEN) I was disappointed they keep on lying on it...(I make almast a transfer a week, they are all the same...but every now and then they come up with these charges...in my opinion totally undue...)

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article 3 paragraph 4

ok...I agree!

but if your instructions are to send euros there is not currency conversion within the bank transfer (they must send euros and euros must arrive...)

there might obviously be a charge for the currency conversion, but after that the regulation is fully applicable


it would be different if you send X amount of GBP which will then be transferred into euros upon arrival...



Denomination of payment, not account: The principle applies based upon the

denomination (or currency) of the payment, not the denomination of the

account from or to which the payment is made. So, where a UK customer

holding a Sterling denominated account orders a credit transfer in euro to a

beneficiary in France, then he or she can only be charged by the UK PSP the

same charge as for a corresponding domestic UK credit transfer in euro.

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:doh:Now that's wonderful isn't it !!

Did you point out that you were the sender and you didn't split any charges as the sending bank doesn't levy any in the first place ??


You can't make it up !!! :wink:

You are defintitely in a strong position. You may even be successful with a complaint to the Ombudsman !!

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I think the FSA can handle an individual case, even though they will not help settle your case with the bank (for that there should be the FOS)

but the FSA is required by law to be the competent authority and the only one who can actually impose sanctions on the banks (PSP) that are in breach of the regulation...

(cannot publich the link...)

see page 64 article 8.22


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thank you for your encouragement!!!

I thought I was in a very strong position too (although probably the strenght will come out when I will clase all the accounts with them and go to some other banks...)

of course I pointed out the "I didn't split any charges" but they are saying that these were the instruction from the foreign bank...this is why I will have to copy a bank statement and send it to the FOS

but everybody says that they are incompetent, useless, very slow, etc...

it will probably change before we get to an end

(it is a very long story actually...after my first complaint in march they actually changed their conditions...now they write that if the transfer is a sepa you do not pay upon arrival...THEY say so (after my complaint, before there was no mention of this!!!) bu even if they say so, then they pretend that the transfer was not a SEPA one...when in Europe you have no other choice to do a EU bank transfer other than a SEPA one!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

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If you want to try the Ombudsman you need to be on your guard and spoon feed all the information.

In my case as stated above the adjudicator just copied and pasted what the bank had written in their letter, he had no idea about any EU rules and certainly no interest to read up about it until I made him do it.

It may be an idea to print out the regulation and highlight the relevant points.

But also read through the thread here in the forum about the FOS


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  • 1 month later...

Hi, Was tearing my hair out last year about transfer charges to send money abroad. I am new to this board (just joined after reading this thread)

& therefore may be naive, but found the following on Citibank website:



"The benefits of SEPA Funds Transfers:

Send money to any bank account in Europe

No fee is applicable for SEPA transfers

No foreign exchange commission on transfers from Citibank Euro current and deposit accounts

Most Euro payments within the EEA will reach the destination account by the end of the next Banking Day following receipt of instructions (subject to our cut off times)"


Those of you who know more than I: do you know if opening an account at Citibank would solve the problem ? & does Citibank charge for

opening accounts with them ? Are there any downsides that are glaringly obvious to you, but not to me ?

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Hi zena

it reads nice, but it's the same as with most banks, they don't charge a 'fee' but a 'commission' for changing Sterling to Euro and vice versa.

The difference with Citibank is they don't charge this commission on current and deposit accounts held in EURO (foreign currency account)

If you have a standard current UK account in Pound Sterling you will also get charged commission for SEPA transfers. It's the only charge they can get away with as the UK is not in the Eurozone.

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