Financial Institution

FlyByNite
FlyByNite Posts: 4
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edited 28 December 2023 at 2:47PM in Savings & investments
This is my first time posting - sorry if I have landed on the wrong forum…
I have had some money in shares for a couple of years now with Vanguard - I have asked for the shares to be sold and the money returned to my Bank Account so that I can purchase a home (the funds will form the deposit).  I am a member of the Armed Forces and serving overseas so Vanguard are unable to provide a phone one-time-passcode so have to conduct ‘internal authorization’.  It has been 6 working days since Vanguard have confirmed that the cash is available in my account (and several phone calls/emails) and there is still no sign of the money being move.  On their website they say that on receipt of the OTC they will move the money in 1 working day.  The bank account I want to move the money to is the same account that they received the money from and regular monthly savings.  What is an acceptable time to deal with my request?  This is delaying my house purchase and although I am lucky and it will not jeopardize the house sale I am due to return to the UK in a couple of weeks and at this rate I will not have a home to move into.
Is there any statutory or reasonable time-frame that a financial institution can hang onto my money when I have asked for it back?
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  • Depends on the terms and conditions, but in more complicated situations like yours, they're almost certainly allowed to take longer for any checks.

    Ultimately, you need to follow their complaints process and if you don't get anywhere, contact the ombudsman.  That won't be a rapid process, though.
  • born_again
    born_again Posts: 13,627
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    FlyByNite said:
    This is my first time posting - sorry if I have landed on the wrong forum…
    I have had some money in shares for a couple of years now with Vanguard - I have asked for the shares to be sold and the money returned to my Bank Account so that I can purchase a home (the funds will form the deposit).  I am a member of the Armed Forces and serving overseas so Vanguard are unable to provide a phone one-time-passcode so have to conduct ‘internal authorization’.  It has been 6 working days since Vanguard have confirmed that the cash is available in my account (and several phone calls/emails) and there is still no sign of the money being move.  On their website they say that on receipt of the OTC they will move the money in 1 working day.  The bank account I want to move the money to is the same account that they received the money from and regular monthly savings.  What is an acceptable time to deal with my request?  This is delaying my house purchase and although I am lucky and it will not jeopardize the house sale I am due to return to the UK in a couple of weeks and at this rate I will not have a home to move into.
    Is there any statutory or reasonable time-frame that a financial institution can hang onto my money when I have asked for it back?

    So what was the date that they said the funds were in your account?
    Is this when they start the "internal authorization" once the funds are in your account, or is that before they arrive in your account?
    Life in the slow lane
  • xylophone
    xylophone Posts: 43,853
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    You can see the money in your Vanguard account and the date it was posted there?
  • dunstonh
    dunstonh Posts: 115,681
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     It has been 6 working days since Vanguard have confirmed that the cash is available in my account (and several phone calls/emails) and there is still no sign of the money being move. 
    Vanguard funds can be T+2 or T+3.  They don't prefund withdrawals.   So, that means you have to wait 2 or 3 working days after the day of trade before Vanguard platform gets the money from the sale of the funds.    Then its usually around 3 working days after that.     So typically, its you get the money around the 6th working day after the request has been keyed.

    Is there any statutory or reasonable time-frame that a financial institution can hang onto my money when I have asked for it back?
    Generally up to 30 days is considered acceptable (i.e. not able to complain about)  but in this case and with it being Christmas and new year, you are looking just over 2 weeks potentially.    It all depends on how the validation of the account for withdrawals is being processed.      We always get our clients validated in advance at set up and never leave it until a withdrawal is needed.  Validation can add up to a week.


     This is delaying my house purchase and although I am lucky and it will not jeopardize the house sale I am due to return to the UK in a couple of weeks and at this rate I will not have a home to move into.
    For the benefit of others, you would never leave it that tight before getting your money into cash and back into your account.  Investment accounts are not instant access savings accounts.



    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
  • Thank you for the answers.  To follow up the cash was available in the account on the 19 Dec (that is to say it had already been converted from shares to cash which was, understandably, a 4 day period) - I requested the cash on the same day that it became available.  Had I been able to receive the one time passcode it would have been transferred (IAW their own FAQ’s) within one working day.  I wonder what validation of the account means (dunsonh) especially as I have already passed all of the security checks via a phone call and via secure email through their website.  30 working days does not sound like a reasonable amount of time to wait.  
  • Additionally I had asked Vanguard beforehand how long it would take to sell and draw down the funds - their response was 5-7 working days (in total).  Is it then unreasonable to expect Vanguard to actually do what they say they will do?
  • xylophone
    xylophone Posts: 43,853
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     Is it then unreasonable to expect Vanguard to actually do what they say they will do?

    No, certainly not but I suspect these "in around x days" have a touch of the "guesstimate", especially around a major holiday like Christmas.

    Perhaps you should leave another enquiry until Tuesday next - if the money hasn't arrived by then you'll certainly have grounds for complaint.

    https://www.vanguardinvestor.co.uk/complaint-procedures
  • Albermarle
    Albermarle Posts: 21,124
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    FlyByNite said:
    Additionally I had asked Vanguard beforehand how long it would take to sell and draw down the funds - their response was 5-7 working days (in total).  Is it then unreasonable to expect Vanguard to actually do what they say they will do?
    It is not unreasonable, but they will not be the first financial services provider to suffer from delays. It happens.
  • I have looked on TrustPilot and 13% of reviews are at 1* (no option for 0*).  This is not an isolated incident.  Vanguard really does seem to be struggling with basic admin (transfers both in and out) and website issues.  General grumpiness is probably also exacerbated by poor returns over the last couple of years.  Common comment is  - “they may have the lowest fees but you get what you pay for”.  Once I have my money out  I will not be darkening the door of Vanguard ever again.
  • GeoffTF
    GeoffTF Posts: 1,343
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    FlyByNite said:
    I have looked on TrustPilot and 13% of reviews are at 1* (no option for 0*).  This is not an isolated incident.  Vanguard really does seem to be struggling with basic admin (transfers both in and out) and website issues.  General grumpiness is probably also exacerbated by poor returns over the last couple of years.  Common comment is  - “they may have the lowest fees but you get what you pay for”.  Once I have my money out  I will not be darkening the door of Vanguard ever again.
    They are certainly struggling. Website issues increase the load on customer support. They are cheap for small accounts, but not for large ones (unless you have a special deal). Compare their average account size with that of Interactive Investor who charge fixed fees. Vanguard has lots of small accounts raising a large customer services load.
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