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Cashminder Account & Cheque Clearance


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Thought I'd post this in here as a warning to other folks with a Cashminder Account or thinking of opening one as a parachute account (mods feel free to move if you think it's better suited in another forum).

 

I opened one of these as my parachute last month (in case A&L get snotty, as I suspect they will) as I have a &%^$ credit rating. All went well setting the account up, paying in some cheques, setting up direct debits, etc.. etc.. (having a few minor niggles with the online banking, but hey...). I found that the stated "up to 5 working days" to clear a cheque was actually 3-3.5 working days in practice - no problem :)

 

Last Saturday, I paid in my A&L settlement cheque (£1300+) along with a couple of smaller value cheques (£81.88 + £5) at my local branch. Credit entry appeared on online banking immediately, and the available balance didn't reflect that (as expected, due to clearance). No problem here - thinking that with BH Monday, they would clear by Friday for me to draw on :)

 

Today, I noticed an "adjustment" entry, for the negative figure of Saturday's credit - as a result, my available balance went negative too :confused: Because of this, I couldn't use my card to get the petrol I'd budgeted to purchase this evening!

 

Rang up customer services and was told that the adjustment entry was to cover the cheques while they were clearing - though this hadn't happened last month when I paid cheques in. I understand the cheque clearance cycle pretty well, and upon further querying this, it turns out that larger value cheques take pretty much the whole 5 working days to clear - this is "for my protection" apparently, since the cheque could be returned unpaid after it had cleared for value on my account and I might have spent the money when it cleared for value. Because I paid in smaller value cheques on the same paying in slip, their clearance is also affected because of the total "large sum" :rolleyes:

 

Apparently, the smaller value cheques that I paid in last month cleared within 3-3.5 working days because there was "less of a risk to me" if I spent the money on clearance and they were subsequently returned unpaid.

 

Up to a point, I think this policy is somewhat sensible (although with our ridiculous banking system, a cheque's actual clearance cycle is longer than 5 working days and it can be returned unpaid/stopped at any time within that cycle!) - however, there's nothing in any of the Ts&Cs or account literature to state this. The only reference to cheque clearance is that it can "take up to 5 working days" and since previous cheques paid in took less than this, I naturally presumed the same clearance time would apply.

 

Now, I will say that the bloke I spoke to was absolutely fantastic, arranging for the previous available balance to be restored so I could go get some petrol tonight, before the whole thing gets balanced out in the "end of day" routines overnight (I can't take the risk of it not being sorted in the morning as I set off for work very early - I work some 70 miles away). I explained my displeasure at being a "victim" of this previously unmentioned policy and that as a new account holder, I am now seriously reconsidering whether I should be continuing with choosing the Co-Op as my bank and putting my salary payments through the account - he agreed that this policy isn't obvious and he'd pass on my comments.

 

He's sort of calmed me down with his rational & understanding actions, but given that some folks around this site will be receiving some fairly large refunds, I thought it worth mentioning...

 

Cheers

 

Michael

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, add on to the above......

 

Tonight, the Co-Op's Link network failed completely - leaving any Co-Op customer unable to:

- check balances at an ATM

- withdraw cash

- make debit card purchases

- top up mobile phones over the phone

- etc.. etc... etc...

 

I was left in the unenviable position of having my card declined when trying to purchase cigarettes at Sainsbury's - it's a good job I hadn't been to fill the car up at that point :o

 

One feels a stroppy letter coming on......:evil:

 

Cheers

 

Michael

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More tales of woe....

 

Tuesday afternoon (~1555hrs), I paid in cash by paying in slip at my local branch to cover a direct debit due out yesterday morning. Simple enough, yes? Not if you're called the Co-Operative Bank it's not, apparently.

 

Looked at my account yesterday morning and the credit wasn't showing, but the direct debit was debited, which sent me £22 overdrawn. Ok, called customer services - apparently the branch didn't key the credit in time for the cut-off at 1630hrs because they were understaffed, apologies, blah blah blah. Never mind that, I was more concerned at the direct debit potentially bouncing. The guy on the phone said that the d/d looked like it'd get paid, but to call back at lunchtime to make sure.

 

Called back at lunchtime, just after 1300hrs, and verified that the credit had been keyed and the direct debit would be paid. Yes, the direct debit would definitely get paid.

 

Guess what? This morning I checked my account......direct debit was bounced, and a £19.50 charge raised :mad:

 

So I called Customer Service again, the girl apologised and refunded the charge, but apart from that seemed totally disinterested in the situation. I could speak to a manager, but apparently I'd only get a half-hearted apology there too.

 

Well, well, well, since A&L haven't closed my account post-claim (and don't seem to be threatening to after all), I think I'll just go back to them. Yes, the Co-Op have lower charges if things go wrong, but the amount of hassle just isn't worth it (and their internet banking is &^%$ too)

 

Caveat Emptor......

 

Cheers

 

Michael

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  • 4 weeks later...

Since I just pointed someone in the direction of this thread, I thought I'd better update it after the problems I had. After my stroppy letter, I got a call back from the Co-Ops customer services people and they agreed that the paying cash in/direct debit fiasco was out of order. They took on board the grief it caused, said they'd ensure the branch was aware of the problems and gave me a £15 "service award". Unfortunately there was not a lot they could do about the LINK network failure since it wasn't in their control - they didn't seem to want my offer of IT consultancy either :D

 

As an aside, A&L are now closing my account, so I've decided to stick with the Co-Op - at least their customer services are willing to sort out problems :)

 

Cheers

 

Michael

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  • 1 month later...

FYI - the Co-Op operate a "three strikes and you're out" policy on the Cashminder account - as in, you bounce 3 DDs/SOs and they'll close your account. I had a close shave with this, as 2 DDs bounced a couple of weeks ago and they took the DD problem (above) into account :o A long phone call got them to reconsider the decision, since the original DD problem was not of my doing and they agreed :rolleyes:

 

Though it was too late for me to prevent them cancelling every single one of my DDs - cracking job having to set them all up again :rolleyes::rolleyes:

 

Cheers

 

Michael

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Hi, i had this last problem with the co-op, i'm afraid its not just a case of re-setting up your d/d's your end. you have to make sure the co-op authorise them also!!! i was put on a 2 month 'good behaviour bond', my term not theirs, i.e no more bounced d/d's etc (which isnt hard when they've cancelled them all lol) and set up my d/d's again only to find they hadn't authorised them!!!! so be aware!!!

I QUESTION THEREFORE I AM!! [sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

 

Unfortunately i'm not an expert in any given field legally and my advice and that of the Consumer Action Group and the Bank Action Group is given without prejudice and without liability so please if in any doubt whatsoever seek help from an insured qualified professional. Contents of my posts are purely my own personal opinions and not condoned or endorsed in any way, shape or form by CAG. Thank you! :p

 

 

I have been smoke-free for 4yrs

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Hi, i had this last problem with the co-op, i'm afraid its not just a case of re-setting up your d/d's your end. you have to make sure the co-op authorise them also!!! i was put on a 2 month 'good behaviour bond', my term not theirs, i.e no more bounced d/d's etc (which isnt hard when they've cancelled them all lol) and set up my d/d's again only to find they hadn't authorised them!!!! so be aware!!!

 

Thanks for that - there's been a couple added back on now, so it looks like they're going through ok.

 

Cheers

 

Michael

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Hi All,

 

Why pay by Derict Debit? Ok some bills add a couple of quid on for not paying by DD I'd rather pay via internet banking when I have the funds available and not be stood in a pertol station with a full tank of fuel and no means to pay!!

 

DD's are a way for banks to make extra cash due to all that you have just mentioned. Variable amount on varying days SOD that.

 

Cheers

 

 

Paul

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  • 12 years later...

This topic was closed on 08 March 2019.

If you have a problem which is similar to the issues raised in this topic, then please start a new thread and you will get help and support there.

If you would like to post up some information which is relevant to this particular topic then please flag the issue up to the site team and the thread will be reopened.

- Consumer Action Group

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