How long do banks keep information?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Budgeting & Bank Accounts
27 replies 34.1K views
janice_shortjanice_short Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Budgeting & Bank Accounts
Hi all, Hoping someone might be able to help with a bit of info!
I made a payment to a third party 9 years ago which has been in dispute for some time. Now it's going to court, but the bank say they no long hold the information as they are not obliged to keep it for longer than 7 years.
The solicitor says they will definitely have it on micro-fiche but just can't be bothered to give it to me. The result is that I am going to have to take them to court to get the info which will cost me £1000.
Most annoying as I have the bank statements but this apparently is not proof enough!
So my question is does anybody know if the banks definitely keep information for longer than 7 years? ~And is there a law which governs this so I can quote it to them?
Hope you can help!
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Replies

  • The Data Protection Act 1998 says that data must be 'kept for no longer than is absolutely necessary.' It is quite conceivable that they no longer have the information that you seek, but I would suggest that you make a 'data subject access request.' There is a £10 fee for this and there is no knowing whether they will provide you with the proof you need, because if, as they say, their records do not contain the information you require, they will not be able to send it to you.
  • EarthBoyEarthBoy Forumite
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    The solicitor says they will definitely have it on micro-fiche but just can't be bothered to give it to me.

    Just because a solicitor's told you that it doesn't make it true. Banks have to keep records for a minimum no. of years, mainly for tax purposes. I think it's 6 or 7 years, but it's definitely less than 9.
    And is there a law which governs this so I can quote it to them?

    If there was such a law, your solicitor should have been able to tell you about it. Your solicitor doesn't sound very good, to be honest.
  • grumblergrumbler Forumite
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    I hope your solicitor knows what s/he is doing.
    Are you sure that you can claim for something that was 9 years ago? I know, the fact that it "has been in dispute for some time" can make some difference.
    We are born naked, wet and hungry...Then things get worse. :(

    .withdrawal, NOT withdrawel ..bear with me, NOT bare with me
    .definitely, NOT definately ......separate, NOT seperate
    should have, NOT should of
    .....guaranteed, NOT guarenteed
  • Archi_BaldArchi_Bald Forumite
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    Most annoying as I have the bank statements but this apparently is not proof enough!

    Says who? If your solicitor: see EarthBoy's view of your solicitor....

    If you already have bank statements, what else would you expect the bank to give you?
  • Hi all,
    If you heard a big crash, that was probably my hopes. But my chin's not quite on the ground yet.
    Hellzapoppin - perhaps the Data Protection Act doesn't cover what I'm looking for. Although I am very willing to believe the bank no longer has this information if it is not required to keep it. I'm definitely going to look at the 'data subject access request' though as that sounds an excellent first stop.
    EarthBoy - good point to ask the solicitor what law or requirement makes them believe the bank will have this info. The solicitor has (apparently) won similar cases but we are trying to proceed with all caution - in fact, we're on our second solicitor, but it's a long story.
    grumbler - we have been told that we have up to 15 years to make the claim - let's hope so!
    Archi Bald - what the solicitor says we need is a 'Bank Transfer Document'
    Ugh.
    Thank you all so much for your hugely useful comments and suggestions.
  • Archi_BaldArchi_Bald Forumite
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    Data Retention Requirements for Banks: there is no requirement by any law or policy or international standard that data gets retained for more than 7 years.

    http://blogs.informatica.com/perspectives/2012/04/25/data-retention-requirement-in-financial-services-what-are-they-why-is-it-so-hard/#fbid=QPdAb1sRDCD
  • EarthBoyEarthBoy Forumite
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    The solicitor has (apparently) won similar cases ....

    How? By making their clients do all the investigation work? It sounds like you are paying them whilst also doing their job for them.
  • ArmoricaArmorica Forumite
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    Statute of limitation is 6 years; banks tend to keep information for 7 years (6+1) to allow for the close of accounting years.

    Sometimes banks will keep information for 6 or 7 years after the termination of a relationship. There is no guarantee it will be on microfiche.

    Most of the legislation in Archi's link won't necessarily apply to a UK bank
  • EarthBoy wrote: »
    How? By making their clients do all the investigation work? It sounds like you are paying them whilst also doing their job for them.
    Just to clarify, we haven't actually given instructions to these solicitors yet so haven't paid them anything. But the situation is that they will only take the case if we can produce the relevant Bank Transfer Document as otherwise they feel we may not have a strong enough case.
    If we can't get the bank to provide it, then we can decide if we want to pay the solicitor and they will commence 'Preliminary Due Diligence' to make the bank provide the information. But yes, if the bank doesn't have it, it can't give it.
  • Armorica wrote: »
    Statute of limitation is 6 years; banks tend to keep information for 7 years (6+1) to allow for the close of accounting years.

    Sometimes banks will keep information for 6 or 7 years after the termination of a relationship. There is no guarantee it will be on microfiche.

    Most of the legislation in Archi's link won't necessarily apply to a UK bank

    Many thanks for that. It does look very much as if the normal limit is 6 or 7 years then.
    I'm not quite sure about your middle paragraph and if that means an extra 6 or 7 years - no, can't do! Maybe I'll have to try and quiz them to find out if there is a chance it's on microfiche. But it's such a lot to pay to find out if we have to do it through the solicitor.
    Which is of course why i'm trying to find out what I can!
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