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Hi all,

 

I'm in the process of claiming against the RBOS for unfair bank charges. I suspect it will be around £150-200 but i'm unsure of when the charges were exactly. I've had a look at the template for requesting the list of charges from the bank. Could someone who has already started proceedings against them let me know if the following is the correct address to send the letter to:

 

THE ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND GROUP PLC

36 ST ANDREW SQUARE

EDINBURGH

EH2 2YB

 

Secondly the £10 payment necessary can that be sent as a cheque payable to The Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC? Lastly i'm not too sure how long i've been with my bank I think it's around 5 years but should I put the date as 6 years back from the date of the letter just to make sure?

 

Thanks

Chris

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Hi Chris,

 

Not 100% sure of the address - it is suggested that you send all correspondence to your local branch. Internal processes will ensure that it gets to the right department.

 

The cheque is fine like that, and yes, it is best to ask for a full disclosure for the length of your account, six years, or whichever is the longer.

 

Good luck - keep us posted.


Alecto, Magaera et Tisiphone: Nemesis on Earth is come.

 

All advice and opinions given by Spiceskull are personal, and are not endorsed by Consumer Action Group or Bank Action Group. Your decisions and actions are your own, and should you be in any doubt, you are advised to seek the opinion of a qualified professional.

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Hi everyone,

 

Luckily i've managed to dig out all of my past bank statements I didnt know i'd kept which is good news. I've looked through them and found about 10 charges. A few of these are £30 bounced D/D fines which i'm aware I can ask to be refunded. The others are £10 charges for going over my overdraft limit and show up on my account as service charges are these claimable as well?

 

Quick edit to add. I've worked out the total of the bank charges which comes to £230. Using the provided spreadsheet it also calculated an additional £32.40 in interest. Do I include this interest in the preliminary approach letter? I wasn't too sure what to do after reading the step by step instructions.

 

Thanks Again

Chris

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No, the 8% can only be added when the claim goes to court.

Regarding the service charge, it depends exactly what its for. To my knowledge, the banks can legally make a charge for providing a 'service', but not for 'penalties' or 'fines' as in charging for going over your OD or for paying direct debits or cashing cheques when there are insufficient funds.

 

Hope this helps.

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First Direct 1 - settled

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IMO, Paying a Direct Debit - extending your overdraft - is a service. The charge might be high, but it's definitely a service.

 

Returning a direct debit unpaid, however, is not.


Bank of Scotland - £4000+ returned. Scottish resident, scottish accounts, but it's Halifax Bank of Scotland now, so took 'em to court in Halifax. One small claims, one defence filed, one refund of all charges + interest! Done and dusted.

Next - Capital One :D

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All my charges are for either £30 Card Misue or unpaid D/D charges or £10 going over my overdraft limit charges is it ok to claim for those do you think? It's the overdraft charges that really bother me I have no idea how they could possibly justify them why not just charge you an elevated rate of interest while you stay over the limit? makes much more sense to me.

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All the ones you mentioin are claimable. See Daves opinions on OD interest. The amount they charge for the overdraft makes them very rich bankers, without the penalty charges.

 

Hi Richard. The point is you are not paying for their service, they are penalising you for being a naughty customer.

The law states that the charge can only be proportionate to the costs incurred by the bank. So how is a £39 cost for the bank paying a dd (without asking you) when they know you have no funds, making you od by about £3 and then whacking a charge on justified when if you go into a shop to buy something by debit card at £15 when you only have £12 in your account the transaction is declined and there is NO charge? Surely the same scenario? And £39 for a computer generated letter? Some service!!!!!

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If you find this site helpful and if you reclaim your charges please donate by clicking the button at the top of the page

 

First Direct 1 - settled

First Direct 2 - settled

RBS 1 - claim made 8/5/6

RBS 2 - claim made 8/5/6

GE Capital - counter claim 6/5/6

Halifax - settled 31/5/6

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All the ones you mentioin are claimable. See Daves opinions on OD interest. The amount they charge for the overdraft makes them very rich bankers, without the penalty charges.

 

Hi Richard. The point is you are not paying for their service, they are penalising you for being a naughty customer.

The law states that the charge can only be proportionate to the costs incurred by the bank. So how is a £39 cost for the bank paying a dd (without asking you) when they know you have no funds, making you od by about £3 and then whacking a charge on justified when if you go into a shop to buy something by debit card at £15 when you only have £12 in your account the transaction is declined and there is NO charge? Surely the same scenario? And £39 for a computer generated letter? Some service!!!!!

 

BoS charge less for paying the item, (except I think that charge also attracted the unauthorised o/d charge) than for returning it; and I agree that all the charges are excessive - I'm merely of the opinion that the returned direct debit charge is a total no-brainer for being illegal, as proving any costs beyond the automated letter is impossible.

 

I'm being nicer to my bank than I should be and not going after the paid item/unauthorised o/d charges. Since it appears to have not paid off, I will be spending this weekend adding up the others and going for the whole lot. I had hoped that I would have a quicker response by going for the utterly indefensible charges.


Bank of Scotland - £4000+ returned. Scottish resident, scottish accounts, but it's Halifax Bank of Scotland now, so took 'em to court in Halifax. One small claims, one defence filed, one refund of all charges + interest! Done and dusted.

Next - Capital One :D

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Hi all,

 

Quick update regarding my claim. Today I recieved the expected reply from my preliminary approach letter from the bank explaining they think the charges are fair etc. There was one part of this letter I wasnt expecting though. Can somone advise whether they think it's still ok to press ahead with a claim and also what steps to take next:

 

"The OFT is presently in contact with us and with seven other major credit card companies to discuss the level of charges on credit cards. It is important that I emphasise these discussions are limited to charges on credit cards only."

 

This still sounds like a standard response to me but I thought i'd check with everyone here first.

 

Thanks

Chris

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Is it a credit card account you are claiming from?


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First Direct 1 - settled

First Direct 2 - settled

RBS 1 - claim made 8/5/6

RBS 2 - claim made 8/5/6

GE Capital - counter claim 6/5/6

Halifax - settled 31/5/6

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see above


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First Direct 1 - settled

First Direct 2 - settled

RBS 1 - claim made 8/5/6

RBS 2 - claim made 8/5/6

GE Capital - counter claim 6/5/6

Halifax - settled 31/5/6

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this is the oft press report. Tried posting link but wouldn't work.

 

Current credit card default charges unfair

 

OFT sets threshold for intervention

 

68/06 5 April 2006

 

Credit card default charges (see note 1) have generally been set at a significantly higher level than is legally fair, said the OFT today. The OFT estimates that across the industry this has led to unlawful penalty charges currently in excess of 300 million a year.

 

Download Calculating fair default charges in credit card contracts (203 kb).

Download guide for consumers (64 kb).

 

The OFT now expects all credit card issuers to recalculate their default charges in line with the principles set out in a statement published today and to take urgent action where needed to reduce the level of credit card default fees. The industry has until 31 May to respond to the statement. These principles also apply to default charges in other consumer contracts such as those for bank overdrafts, store cards and mortgages.

 

Where credit card default charges are set at more than 12, the OFT will presume that they are unfair, and is likely to challenge the charge unless there are limited, exceptional business factors in play. A default charge is not fair simply because it is below 12. Setting a threshold for intervention is a pragmatic pro-consumer action that is designed to give the industry the opportunity to change its practice without litigation. It is supported by detailed guidance to the industry as to how to reduce the likelihood of public enforcement (see note 2).

 

A default charge should only be used to recover certain limited administrative costs. These may include postage and stationery costs and staff costs and also a proportionate share of the costs of maintaining premises and IT systems necessary to deal with defaults (see note 3). Exceptional business factors which may affect the level of a fair charge may include policies to prevent casual defaults as operated by issuers such as Egg (see note 4).

 

Only a court can finally decide whether a charge is unfair or not. The OFT has today set out a statement of its view of the law. This has not generally been accepted by most of the eight credit card issuers.

 

John Fingleton, OFT Chief Executive, said:

 

'Our statement of principles provides practical guidance to banks which increases their incentives to compete vigorously while protecting consumers from being charged unfair amounts. Our threshold approach is a spur to changes in market practice. We expect credit card issuers to adjust their default fee levels quickly. We have not ruled out future legal action if the market does not respond positively.'

 

NOTES

 

1. These are charges in standard credit card contracts for a failure to pay a minimum payment on the due date, exceeding a credit limit or a failure to honour a payment made.

 

2. This reflects the OFT's duty to target its resources on serious consumer detriment as a priority over cases involving less harm to consumers. Card issuers are required to confirm their response to the OFT statement by 31 May 2006.

 

3. A fair default charge should not exceed a reasonable estimate of certain limited administrative costs which the credit card issuer reasonably expects to incur as a result of default.

 

4. The OFT is not proposing that default fees should be equivalent to the threshold, and a court will certainly not consider that a default fee is fair just because it is below the threshold. Where there are exceptional business factors, so that the presumption that a default charge over 12 is unfair is not applicable, this does not necessarily mean that the current level of the default charge is consistent with the OFT's interpretation of the requirements of unfair contract terms legislation. But for example, where a card issuer has a policy of requiring customers to pay minimum monthly repayments by direct debits, such as that operated by Egg, and offers credit cards only to customers that satisfy a relatively high scoring requirement it may be able to set a fair default fee at a level above the threshold.

 

5. The OFT has published a short guide for consumers and consumer advice agencies setting out the principles on which default charges should be calculated. This can be downloaded above.


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If you find this site helpful and if you reclaim your charges please donate by clicking the button at the top of the page

 

First Direct 1 - settled

First Direct 2 - settled

RBS 1 - claim made 8/5/6

RBS 2 - claim made 8/5/6

GE Capital - counter claim 6/5/6

Halifax - settled 31/5/6

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"The OFT is presently in contact with us and with seven other major credit card companies to discuss the level of charges on credit cards. It is important that I emphasise these discussions are limited to charges on credit cards only."

 

This still sounds like a standard response to me but I thought i'd check with everyone here first.

 

This is a totally automated, standard response. Like when the bank writes to you in response to a letter and says it will "deal with your complaint and get back to you within 8 weeks".

 

It means nothing more than the paper it is written on - which unless it is gold leaf, is nothing.

 

Just get on and post your LBA and stop being so pleasant. You are starting to sound like "Tory Boy" - "nice but dim". (that's a joke by the way).


"BA Group. The World's favourite CA Group"

 

HSBC 2 claims amalgamated. £1195. settled in full prior to filing claim.

BARCLAYS settled in full 2 days prior to submission of defence by Barclays

CAP ONE settled in full on day 14 of LBA (£210)

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No it's a Royal Bank of scotland Student Account, is that going to be a problem?

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No, not at all, just that the OFT recommendations in the letter refer to credit card charges (see oft report below) and the oft are only suggesting that the banks follow them at present. Don't worry, and as Don Quixote says, get sending your letters. We'll all be here if you have any problems.


If you found this post helpful please click on the scales, top right. Thank you.

 

If you find this site helpful and if you reclaim your charges please donate by clicking the button at the top of the page

 

First Direct 1 - settled

First Direct 2 - settled

RBS 1 - claim made 8/5/6

RBS 2 - claim made 8/5/6

GE Capital - counter claim 6/5/6

Halifax - settled 31/5/6

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Phew I thought it was just credit cards then and i'd made a fool of myself! Don't worry though i'm determined theres no way they'll get away without giving me a full refund now! I'm just modifying the Letter Before Action template now. I've noticed there are more references to the OFT in that letter should I leave those in?

 

Thanks Again Everyone

Chris

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yes, the templates are fine to use. Good Luck.


If you found this post helpful please click on the scales, top right. Thank you.

 

If you find this site helpful and if you reclaim your charges please donate by clicking the button at the top of the page

 

First Direct 1 - settled

First Direct 2 - settled

RBS 1 - claim made 8/5/6

RBS 2 - claim made 8/5/6

GE Capital - counter claim 6/5/6

Halifax - settled 31/5/6

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There's something I havent thought about before. I've sent off my Letter before action to the bank last week. The problem is i'm a recent graduate from university with an £1800 overdraft. How common is it for a bank to close someones account after making a claim like this because i'm going to have trouble paying off that overdraft thats for sure!

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They can close your account or call your overdraft in .That is why we recommend you open a parachute account.People are starting court action to stop the closure of their accounts so if you do a search of the site you can read more about it.

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When you want to fool the world, tell the truth. :D

Advice & opinions of Janet-M are offered informally, without prejudice & without liability. Use your own judgment. Seek advice of a qualified insured professional if you have any

doubts.

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This is the problem I can't imagine being able to get another account with a big enough overdraft limit especially just being a graduate. Is it true they can't just call it in like that they would have to negotiate a repayment plan? That would probably end up being a blessing in disguise if they did.

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Quick update, after i'd sent my LBA I recieved a letter from my branch informing me that my claim had been refered to the banks customer services department. About a week later I recieved a letter from them informing me they were still unwilling to refund the charges and suggested I went to the financial ombudsman with my complaint. So i've decided to take it further and make a court claim. My question is i'm currently on the Money Claim website filing the claim now and it's asking for the defendant's details should I put in the address of my branch or the address of the royal bank of scotlands HQ?

 

Thanks in advance

Chris

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The HQ's in Scotland, MCOL will not accept it. If your branch is in England, use that. If it's in Scotland and so are you, you can't use MCOL, you have to go to your Sheriff's court to file.

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I'm stuck again! I'm filling in the particulars of the claim and struggling a little bit is there anywhere on the website I can find a guide on how to fill this part in?

 

Also the part on the website where it asks you to specify the daily rate of interest on the charges what would that be?

 

Thanks

Chris

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Right this is what i've come up with using one of the templates from this website:

 

"The claimant has a contract with the defendant from 08/02 which was conducted on their standard terms and conditions. The claimant claims the return of £230 levied by the defendant in the way of charges. The charges are a disproportionate penalty and therefore unenforceable as they are contrary to common law. Further,as a disproportionate penalty they are invalid under the Unfair(Contracts) Terms Act 1977s.4 and under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regs 1999,Para 8 and sch.2(1)(e). In the event that the charges are not a penalty, they are unreasonable within the meaning of the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 s.15. The defendant has been asked to justify the charges but they have declined to do so. The claimant claims interest under s.69 of the County Courts Act 1984 at the rate of 8% a year from 28/07/03 to 17/06/06 of £33.92 and also interest at the same rate up to the date of judgment or earlier payment at a daily rate of £0.05."

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