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Would you keep it?

Poll started 3 January 2005: As a good MoneySaver you've just checked your bank statement, only to discover a couple of days ago £1000 was added; yet it's not your cash it's a definite error. Which of these is closest to what you'd do?

a) Inform the bank straight away

b) Not tell the bank, but wouldn't touch it for at least a year
c) Leave it a week or two to see if it's taken back then withdraw it
d) Take it out straight away and put it in the top savings account
e) Take it out straight away and spend, spend, spend!

Vote here or click reply to discuss
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  • elonaelona Forumite
    11.8K Posts
    I got credited with £16,000 that was not mine and reported it straight away.

    It took them a few weeks to sort it out by which time I had got quite fond of it - I eventually got the money taken out of my account and a huge bunch of red roses to say thanks.
    "This site is addictive!"
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  • When I first opened my current account, all those years ago I had £60 of my cash go astray and the bank sent me a letter saying I was overdrawn and to lodge funds immediately Well annoyed as it was 2 days before Christmas. Turned out my cash had gone into someone elses account with the same name as me. I complained, cash reimbursed and £50 for my trouble and two letters of apology, Head Office and local branch.
    “Ordinary riches can be stolen, real riches cannot. In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be taken from you.” - Oscar Wilde
  • Al_MacAl_Mac Forumite
    5.5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    Being in IT we often get asked what happened to the £******, sometimes a big lot, in this account, from 1993!!!!!!!!!.

    I check all my statements and would know if 1p was missing.

    Sit on it until your next statement. Keep an eye on you interest statement, end of year, if that has been tweaked, complain. It may only be a few pence wrong. But the chocs/wine make up for it.

  • I just couldnt inform them cos I'd be rubbing my hands til they chaffed!! lol

    I would try and wait a year before I touched it though. In fact you might be able to help with a problem... OH used to work for a company and had been left from them about 18 months. when we went to the bank, we had more in than anticipated, but just thought we'd been prudent, so obviously it got spent on bills etc. Then we got a letter from the company saying that it was put in by mistake. We have chosen to ignore the letters they've sent as they hjave gone to OH's mums. They now say they're taking him to court. They know that OH doesnt live there...
  • A month or so ago I withdrew £3500 cash to pay for a horse. The next morning I noticed the bank had added it instead of deducted it so I had £7000 more than I should. I made a note to check later, intending to tell them if it was still there, and found that they had reversed it within a few hours. Just imagine the trouble I'd have been in if I'd stuck it all in a savings account pdq!
  • It's never happened to me but I would probably do option C. I wouldnt voluntarily tell them about it. Lets face it, they take enough money from us in bank charges and I bet they wouldnt come forward too quickly if the money was in their favour.
    2008 Comping Challenge
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  • I would keep the lot as Banks have Insurance and its their fault
    and when since are they the good guys, take the lot I say.. as long
    as you can get away with it.
  • I'd probably put it into a high interest savings account, however this is ONLY if there were sufficient funds in the original account to cover it should they decide to just take it back without notice. And if they do, well fine, they get their money back, and you get a little extra something in interest!
  • Hi Guys

    This happened to me too a while ago and the amount was not bad, half my salary! As a recent graduate I could definately have made good use of it to pay off my student debt. very very tempting this.

    But I got some legal advice on this and basically the term is "mistaken money" and you are required to give it back and there is no expiry limit on this. So even after ten years you would have to give it back and if you refuse to or you have spent it, you can be imprisoned for this!

    However, they cannot simply reverse any booking on any account without permission and if the bank does not contact you there is nothing wrong with putting the money into a savings account and only giving it back when asked and without the interest. But you should make sure it is an account you can access at any time when they ask for it back.

    Good luck. Mine asked for it back withing 2 weeks though :(

    xx beccolina
  • IvanOpinionIvanOpinion Forumite
    21.9K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    To keep it would be tantamount to theft therefore I would quite happily inform them. However depending on which bank it came from I would either simply give it back or if it was from one particular bank I would have a bit of fun with them and make them work hard to get it back (a few years ago they gave me a hard time after their mistake). Therefore I would lodge it into a high interest account until they could prove to my satisfaction that it was their money (and not someone elses) ... of course I would charge them fees.

    However I really don't think it would be worth a lot of hassle for the interest on £1000 ... now £1000000 might be a different matter (who is legally entitled to the interest ... I have heard different versions to this ... both from legal people).

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