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Right folks..............here goes it.......

 

I managed to sweet talk both the branch and the telephone banking into ordering my past six years statements on both my accounts I have/ had with RBS.

 

There was a little "trouble" getting the second account that was closed down late last year - but only inasmuch as it took them to trace the account and find "fiche" copies of the statements...... overall I was charged for statements (albeit at standard going rate) but they all were fine about getting them ordered and sent through....... which is a big help as no preliminary DPA letters and hassles......

 

Now for the claim.............

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I've drilled up my first intial request letter - which was a hybrid between the truly impressive letters Mcuth (mcuth vs RBoS on a seperate thread here) and the template letters from Martin Lewis on the similar Money Saving Expert website.......... so lets see what Uncle Tommy (Tommy McClean, Head of Customer Relations at RBS, makes of this...! :) )

 

 

The letter reads as follows:

 

 

The Royal Bank of Scotland PLC

Customer Relations,

Customer Central Support,

First Floor,

The Forthstone,

56 South Gyle Crescent,

Edinburgh. Scotland.

EH12 9LE

 

Request for Charges Refund on Accounts: XYZ and YZW at Sort Code: SS-YY-ZZ

 

Dear Sirs/Mm,

 

My request

I am writing to ask you to refund a total of £6,117.16, representing £4,738.18 in charges and £1,378.98 in interest (calculated from a rate of 8% taken from Section 69 of the County Courts Act (1984)), which you have levied from accounts XYZ and YZW, held within branch sort code SS-YY-ZZ, since inception. I now understand that the regime of fees which you have applied to my account in relation to card misuse, cheque/direct debit/standing order refusal, referral fees and so forth are unlawful at Common Law, Statute and recent consumer regulations. If you say that they are not, please demonstrate this by letting me have a full breakdown of the costs to which you have been put by as a result of my breaches of contract, in order to reassure me that your penalties really do reflect your costs.

 

I am of the view that your charges represent a penalty and are therefore unrecoverable at Common Law. In the Scottish case of Castaneda and Others v. Clydebank Engineering and Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. (1904) 12 SLT 498; the House of Lords held that a contractual party can only recover damages for actual or liquidated losses incurred from a breach of contract. This is also the position in English law: Wilson v Love [1896]; Dunlop Pneumatic Tyre Co Ltd v New Garage and Motor Co Ltd [1915] AC 79; Ford Motor Co v Armstrong [1915]; Bridge v Campbell Discount Co. Ltd [1962]; Murray v Leisureplay [2004].

 

Your charges do not reflect any actual loss; instead they appear to represent a lucrative profit-making scheme. In particular, charges were applied after I entered into transactions without sufficient funds in my account. The actual loss is the cost of automatically sending me a computer generated letter which I would respectfully submit is valued at no more than 50 pence.

 

UK banks have recently given evidence to the House of Commons Treasury Committee on how bank charges are calculated: "The costs are going to pay for all the people we have who pursue debt, collect debt, speak to customers and chase payments. The way these charges are arrived at is by taking these total costs and making some assumptions about the volume that is going to come through to arrive at the individual charges" (2nd report, 25 January 2005, paragraph 50).

 

Accordingly, the charges applied to my account are not a reasonable pre-estimate of your loss in relation to my account. No one has had to collect anything with regards account defaults. Your charges would appear to represent a device to recover global losses (for example, loan defaulters, bad debt write off, including commercial lending both within and outside the UK).

 

On a separate note, your charges appear to represent an unfair term of contract which is contrary to the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 (SI. 1999/2083). As I am a consumer my account falls within the scope of Regulation 5 of the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999. The charges you have levied constitute an unfair penalty under reference to paragraph 1(e) of schedule 2 of the said regulations:

 

Indicative and non-exhaustive list of terms which may be regarded as unfair - 1. Terms which have the object of effect of - (e) requiring any consumer who fails his obligation to pay a disproportionately high sum in compensation”.

 

The Office of Fair Trading, OFT, stated on 26 July 2005 that “a charge is likely to be disproportionately high if it is more than a court would be likely to award if the lender sued the cardholder for breach of contract”. Owing to the large profit margin included within your charges, in addition to the actual loss, they are unrecoverable as an unfair term in contract. I believe that your charges require me to pay a disproportionately high sum in compensation for incurring transactions which were ultimately declined by an automated computer system. In addition, it is unfair to require me to subsidize your global debt recovery costs and debt write-off.

 

It has now been confirmed that your particularly high level of penalties are considered to be unfair per se by the OFT who reported on 5th April 2006 and are therefore presumed to be unlawful in the absence of specific proof to the contrary.

 

Your responsibilities

I would draw your attention to the terms of the contract which you agreed to at the time that I opened my account. It is an implied term of that contract that you would conduct yourselves lawfully and in a manner which complies with UK law.

 

I am quite shocked that you have operated my account in this way as I had always reposed confidence in your integrity and expertise as my fiduciary. I consider that your repeated representations that your charges are fair and reasonable are deceptive and that they have deceived me into agreeing to pay them. The concealment of the true nature of your charges has prevented me from asserting my right until now.

 

What I require

I calculate that, as at today’s date, you have taken a total of £3,269.18 and £1,469.00 in charges against accounts XYZ and YZW respectively plus £1,013.10 and £365.56 which you have charged me in overdraft interest for the sum against accounts XYZ and YZW respectively – a cumulative total of £6,117.16. The overdraft interest figures of £1,013.10 and £365.56 are calculated from a rate of 8% taken from Section 69 of the County Courts Act (1984).

 

The grand total of the above is £6,117.16 and have enclosed two schedules of the charges and contractual interest for both accounts against which I am claiming. I request that you refund this amount in full, payable by cheque directly to me.

 

Targets to resolve this matter

I hope that you will enter into a sincere dialogue with me about this matter and write on the assumption that you will prefer to do this rather than merely respond with standard letters and leaflets.

You have 10 working days, from receipt of this letter (i.e. by Wednesday, 18th April 2007), to reply unconditionally accepting my request in principle and letting me know a date by which I will receive payment.

 

If you do not respond, or do not respond positively, within this time period, I shall send you a letter before action allowing a further 10 working days in which to reflect. I believe that these targets are more than sufficient for a large company such as yours with dedicated staff and departments. After that will be no further communication from myself and I shall issue a County Court claim at the expiry of the second deadline.

 

yours faithfully

 

 

Atlantic :-x

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This is a monster........... and I'm going to send it off via Post Office special delivery first thing tommorow - that way I can both track it's progress to Tommy's (Tommy McClean's) desk and also I have definate *proof* that it has reached it's destination..........

 

No chance for "dirty tricks"........at least in the early stages.....!! ;)

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thanks bigmac........... on a positive note I've heard they're both processing and paying out quite fast now....... but on a negative note I did pick up something about them more likely to fight all the way to imminent court action on the larger claims.......

 

Mcuth (mcuth vs RBS) is an inspiration 2 follow...... as he's claiming against a different calculation of interest: compounded whereas I'm just doing 8% statutory - s69

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RBS is a Scottish bank - and I was nervous this would affect my ability to submit a small claim via the tried and tested small claims system.....

 

It appears that the only deciding factor on whether you submit via the Scots Law (£750 maximum) as opposed to English Common Law (£5,000 maximum) or Northern Irish (a maximum between the two) is purely down to *your* location and where you live - *not* where the bank's located..........

 

To help matters RBS has two joint head offices (for litigation purposes): one in London and the other in Edinburgh......

 

The only "issue" I'm worried about now.... in the coming months heated negotiation is that I still maintain an overdraft on one of the accounts I'm claiming against - although the going consensus seems to point that once RBS pays out they'll simply deduct £2,000 off my amount to pay off the overdraft..........

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  • 3 weeks later...

Right folks............

 

I received a standard "delaying" letter from RBS three days ago informing me that they were investigating the claim. This delaying letter itself was received two days short of the first 14 day deadline I set them.

 

So ....I've just drafted a second and final 14 day warning letter which I'll send to them on Monday via recorded delivery.

 

I'll post up a copy of my second 14 day final warning letter in my next posting. I am determined to hammer them over this - I think what makes me so mad about their charges is that they were stripping my account bare when they knew full well I was having a hard time with work and finances........

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Keep on going....

 

I used almost the same template letter :-)

 

mine almost went to the line

 

I was just about to issue court proceedings and i got a full settlement

 

charges AND interest :-)

 

mind you most of it got swallowed up by overdrafts and other urgent debts

 

mine was a total of £6200

 

Dave

** We would not seek a battle as we are, yet as we are, we say we will not shun it. (Henry V) **

 

see you stand like greyhounds in the slips,

Straining upon the start. The game's afoot:

Follow your spirit; and, upon this charge

Cry 'God for Harry! England and Saint George!'

:D If you think I have helped, informed, or amused you do the clickey scaley thing !! :D

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http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/rbs-bos-successes/

 

I would think there are plenty more where that came from here. Have faith ;) Won't be long before you get yours back...

If my post has been useful, tip my scales and let me know

 

Always start with the User guide!

Stuck with RBS charges? Click here!!

 

RBS CA1 £2794 SETTLED!!! RBS CA2 £503 SETTLED!!! HBOS CC £498 SETTLED!!! Barclaycard £705 (with CCI) ONGOING!!! NATWEST CA ONGOING!!! LLOYDS CA x 2, CC, LOAN ONGOING!!! HFC LOAN ONGOING!!!

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Thanks T4FF - your advice and support is really appreciated.

 

Going forwards though and given Consumer Action Group is plus or minus the only serious site out there run by and for consumers (Martin Lewis is brilliant - but his site is run really to keep him abreast of events and industry changes for his "real" career which is journalism)....... I reckon if you want to make a "social statment" on debt issues then Consumer Action Group might maybe be able to register as a formal charity (to obtain tax status and funding opportunities) as they really are doing a good job - just looking at the sheer number of logons for example......

 

I actually really felt completely on my own with my recent history of financial struggles and squabbling with banks (not that I'm scared as I used to contract/ work for most of the banks - but their stockl market arms, so nothing to do with high street banks) but........ the stories that persistently keep appearing on this and other websites are really horrific - like old great grandmothers going one pound into overdraft and the bank applying the "force of god" to hammer them into shelling out 2 or 3 hundred in "fair and justifiable" charges!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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I agree it's not right and is something that needs to be regulated sooner rather than later. It is no longer a penalty, but a money spinner preying on the weak.

If my post has been useful, tip my scales and let me know

 

Always start with the User guide!

Stuck with RBS charges? Click here!!

 

RBS CA1 £2794 SETTLED!!! RBS CA2 £503 SETTLED!!! HBOS CC £498 SETTLED!!! Barclaycard £705 (with CCI) ONGOING!!! NATWEST CA ONGOING!!! LLOYDS CA x 2, CC, LOAN ONGOING!!! HFC LOAN ONGOING!!!

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Hi Atlantic, I see your post to rae may confirming what I have been saying for long and weary. However recent events seems to suggest we may be wrong, and limitation flawed. (mccuth)

05/03/07 S.A.R - (Subject Access Request) handed in at branch

Found missing statements at home !!!!

08/03/07 Prelim+ schedule posted rec del

22/03/07 :mad: No reply to prelim LBA posted rec del

05/04/07 :mad: 14 days and no reply to LBA, sent e-mail

27/04/07 :D Offered FULL SETTLEMENT £3375

03/05/07 Cash in bank account :D :D

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right folks..........

 

further to a really bog standard and abysmal dismissal letter from RBS stating they were "looking to investigate my complaint..." with *no* timeframe, I decided to carry on regardless and stick to my own timeframe that I dicatated to them....!!

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so...... last Tuesday I sent them (via recorded delivery as with the first letter) this (in addition to another complete breakdown of the charges):

 

23rd April 2007

The Royal Bank of Scotland PLC

Customer Relations,

Customer Central Support,

First Floor,

The Forthstone,

56 South Gyle Crescent,

Edinburgh. Scotland. EH12 9LE

Final Letter before Action: Charges Refund on Accounts: XXXXXXXX and YYYYYYYY at Sort Code: XX-YY-ZZ

Dear Sirs/Mm,

I am very disappointed that you have failed to respond to my letter of 3 April 2007 with full and final settlement of total outstanding charges, £6,117.16. I now understand that the regime of fees which you have applied to my account in relation to card misuse, cheque/direct debit/standing order refusal, referral fees and so forth are unlawful at Common Law, Statute and recent consumer regulations. If you say that they are not, please demonstrate this by letting me have a full breakdown of the costs to which you have been put by as a result of my breaches of contract, in order to reassure me that your penalties really do reflect your costs.

I would draw your attention to the terms of the contract which you agreed to at the time that I opened my account. It is an implied term of that contract that you would conduct yourselves lawfully and in a manner which complies with UK law.

I am frankly shocked that you have operated my account in this way as I had always reposed confidence in your integrity and expertise as my fiduciary. I calculate that you have taken a total of £6,117.16, representing £4,738.18 in charges and £1,378.98 in interest (calculated from a rate of 8% taken from Section 69 of the County Courts Act (1984)), which you have levied from accounts XXXXXXXX and YYYYYYYY, held within branch sort code XX-YY-ZZ, since inception. I am enclosing a copy of the schedule of the charges which I am claiming. I have already sent you a copy of this in my original letter of the 3 April 2007.

I require repayment in full of this money. If you do not comply fully within 14 days then I shall begin a claim against you for the full amount plus interest plus my costs and without further notice.

yours faithfully

 

Atlantic :mad:

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Went on to Royal Mail's website (www.royalmail.com) and checked the "tracking status" of the item...... and:

 

Your item with reference DL194183254GB was delivered from our WEST EDINBURGH Delivery Office on 24/04/07 .

 

 

..... to save hassle I hope they do same with me as with davefirewalker's claim and simply admit they've ballsed up and pay it as the next stage involves a good 5 minute walk to our local court house here in central London!!

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Dammm.....

 

that was almost the same letter too and almost the same amount :-)

 

wish you the best of luck

 

Dave

** We would not seek a battle as we are, yet as we are, we say we will not shun it. (Henry V) **

 

see you stand like greyhounds in the slips,

Straining upon the start. The game's afoot:

Follow your spirit; and, upon this charge

Cry 'God for Harry! England and Saint George!'

:D If you think I have helped, informed, or amused you do the clickey scaley thing !! :D

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Hi Atlantic your nearly there now, and yes keep to your timescales as they are big enough with their resources to deal with your claim in the times you have set. They are just trying to buy time and put you off.

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you should have seen the tone of the "fob-off" letter - it really sounded as if I was some renegade insect behaving like a minor irritant.........

 

the funny thing is with that "tone" of letter stuck in my mind now I am just all too keen to see this through to court proceedings and full and final settlement - it's counterproductive - they must surely know that by now!!!!????????????;)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Ok.......

 

I guess I shouldn't be surprised given all the other threads and comments about RBS's "delaying" tactics....... but the deadline on the second LBA I sent them expired last week (on Wednesday 9th May 07)....... so I am left with no choice but to escalate this to court action!

 

I kind of knew they wouldn't just cough up for a claim the size of mine - but at least if they'd tried to make an offer up until this point then they could have saved themselves the 8% interest (amounting to about £1,200) and all the court fees that'll be incurred from now on....... there ineptness and slowness is really going to cost them dear on this one!!!!

 

....Consumers strike back!!!!!! :wink:

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Here goes it......

 

As my claim is for £6,117.16 the court fees due to be paid are £250 which must be paid with the submission of my N1 court form. I've got to print off 3 copies of the PoC (Particulars of Claim) part of N1 form and submit them along with the court fee tommorow morning........ at the Central London County Court (in my case!).....

 

 

Claimant:

 

Atlantic

 

vs.

 

Defendant:

 

The Royal Bank of Scotland PLC

RBS Litigation,

1 Princess Street,

London. England. UK.

EC2R 8PB

 

Brief Details of Claim:

 

Money claim for return of penalty charges applied to the Claimants bank account by the Defendant.

 

Value:

 

Charges £ 4,738.18

Interest under s.69 County Courts Act 1984 £ 1,378.98

Court Fee £ 250.00

TOTAL £ 6,367.16

Plus interest pursuant to S.69 County Courts Act 1984 from date of issue to date of judgement/settlement at £1.04 per day.

 

Particulars of Claim:

 

1. The Claimant has a Graduate Royalties Current Account, number YYYYYYYY, opened on or around 1st October 1991 and a Current Account, number XXXXXXXX, opened on or around 1st July 1998 and closed on or around 15th November 2006, opened at the Defendant’s branch (sort code XX-YY-ZZ) which will collectively be referred to as “the Account” henceforth.

 

2. During the period in which the Account has been operating the Defendant debited numerous charges to the Account in respect of purported breaches of contract on the part of the Claimant and also charged interest on the charges once applied. The Claimant understands that the Defendant contends that the charges were debited in accordance with the terms of the contract between itself and the Claimant.

 

3. A schedule of the charges is attached to these particulars of claim (Appendix 1), with copies of the relevant statement pages that itemise the charges and interest charged thereon.

 

4. The Claimant contends that:

 

a) The charges debited to the Account are punitive in nature; are not a genuine pre-estimate of cost incurred by the Defendant; exceed any alleged actual loss to the Defendant in respect of any breaches of contract on the part of the Claimant; and are not intended to represent or related to any alleged actual loss, but instead unduly enrich the Defendant which exercises the contractual term in respect of such charges with a view to profit.

 

b) The contractual provision that permits the Defendant to levy such charges is unenforceable by virtue of the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations (1999), the Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977 and common law.

 

5. Accordingly the Claimant claims:

 

a) the return of the amounts debited in respect of charges in the sum of £4,738.18 and any interest charged thereon;

 

b) Any applicable court costs;

 

c) The claimant claims interest under section 69 of the County Courts Act 1984 at the rate of 8% a year, from the date of each transaction to 17th May 2007 of £1,378.98 and also interest at the same rate up to the date of judgment or earlier payment at a daily rate of £1.04

 

6. Save payments into and/or determined by the Court, any sums paid in settlement of this claim are required to be made by cheque, which should be made payable to the Claimant.

 

Statement of Truth

 

Dated this 17th May 2007

 

I believe that the facts stated in these particulars of claim are true.

 

Signed:

 

Atlantic

Claimant

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I was having a go over my statements copying them for the legal documentation and evidence as part of the court N1 form, which I'll stick in tommorow..... and noticed if you add up all the overdraft interest it is really really huge - in mt case it comes to £823!!!!!!...alone!!!

 

So.....for my sins as the claim is massive anyway and I just know I'm going to seriously fall out with RBS anyway..... I figured I might as well add overdraft interest to the court proceedings, which with 8% s69 interest takes this extra entry to over £1,000 in itself!!!

 

It's staggering just how much RBS were stripping out of my account....and when I was at my weakest job and finance-wise......

 

I've completely redone my N1 and here it is (albeit the particulars of claim, with the obvious minor amendments to the "summary" boxes on the front of claim form):

 

 

 

IN THE CENTRAL LONDON COUNTY COURT

IN THE CASE BETWEEN:

 

CLAIMANT

Atlantic :mad:

 

 

- and -

 

DEFENDANT

ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND PLC

RBS Litigation,

1 Princess Street,

London. England. UK.

EC2R 8PB

 

Particulars of Claim

 

1. The Claimant has a Graduate Royalties Current Account, number XXXXXXXX, opened on or around 1st October 1991 and a Current Account, number YYYYYYYY, opened on or around 1st July 1998 and closed on or around 15th November 2006, opened at the Defendant’s branch (sort code YY-XX-ZZ) which will collectively be referred to as “the Account” henceforth.

 

2. The Account is governed by the Defendant’s Personal Banking Terms and Conditions (“the contract”)

 

3. During the period in which the Account has been operating the Defendant has debited numerous charges to the Account in respect of purported breaches of contract in regards to “Card Misuse”, “Unpaid Items”, “Referral Charge”, etc.. on the part of the Claimant and also charged overdraft interest on the charges once applied. The Claimant understands that the Defendant contends that the charges were debited in accordance with the terms of the contract between itself and the Claimant.

 

4. Schedules of the charges and interest for each of the two bank accounts referred to under the term “the Account” is attached to these particulars of claim as follows:

Appendix 1 – Summary of Charges levied against the Account

Appendix 2 - Summary of Overdraft Interest levied against the Account

Appendix 3 - Copies of the 182 statement pages that itemize the charges and interest charged thereon.

 

5. The Claimant contends that:

 

a) The charges debited to the Account:

i) are punitive in nature;

ii) are not a genuine pre-estimate of cost incurred by the Defendant;

iii) exceed any alleged actual loss to the Defendant in respect of any breaches of contract on the part of the Claimant;

 

iv) are not intended to represent or relate to any alleged actual loss, but instead unduly enrich the Defendant which exercises the contractual term in respect of such charges with a view to profit.

 

b) Further to 8.a), the charges debited to the Account are penalties rather than liquidated damages. A charge is held to be a penalty if the sum stipulated for is extravagant and unconscionable in amount in comparison to the greatest loss that could conceivably be proved to have followed from the breach. A penalty clause is void in its entirety and unenforceable.

 

c) The contractual provision that permits the Defendant to levy such charges is unenforceable by virtue of the Unfair Contract Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations (1999), the Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977 and the common law.

 

d) In the alternative to 8.a), b) and c), if the Court finds that the charges are not a penalty, then the Claimant contends that they are unreasonable within the meaning of s.15 Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982

 

6. The Claimant will rely on the Competition Commission’s report entitled “Northern Irish Personal Banking,” published on 20th October, 2006, as evidence that the Defendant is aware that the income derived from its default charges is calculated to generate material profits and is not merely a means of recouping losses incurred in relation to Account defaults

 

7. The Claimant will further rely on the Office of Fair Trading’s (“the OFT”) statement of 5th April 2006 concerning default charges in credit card contracts, as the OFT’s recommendations regarding standard default terms in credit card contracts have wider implications, as regards bank current Account agreements.

 

8. Accordingly the Claimant claims:

 

a) The return of the amounts debited between 1st April 2001 and 1st April 2007 in respect of charges in the sum of £4,738.18, together with overdraft interest charged thereon in the sum of £823.00 – totaling £5,561.18;

 

b) Any applicable court costs;

 

c) The claimant claims interest under section 69 of the County Courts Act 1984 at the rate of 8% a year, from the date of each transaction to 18th May 2007 of £1,593.62 and also interest at the same rate up to the date of judgment or earlier payment at a daily rate of £1.22.

 

9. Save payments into and/or determined by the Court, any sums paid in settlement of this claim are required to be made by cheque, which should be made payable to the Claimant.

 

Statement of Truth

 

Dated this 18th May 2006

 

I believe that the facts stated in these particulars of claim are true.

 

Signed:

 

Atlantic :mad:

 

 

 

Claimant

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