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  • FIRST POST
    • User1234567
    • By User1234567 13th Oct 19, 3:58 AM
    • 12Posts
    • 3Thanks
    User1234567
    A major bank has been refusing to let me withdraw £10k of family savings for over one month
    • #1
    • 13th Oct 19, 3:58 AM
    A major bank has been refusing to let me withdraw £10k of family savings for over one month 13th Oct 19 at 3:58 AM
    I have approximately £10,000 of savings in an account with a major UK bank. The savings come from my (public sector) salary, paid in over the last ten years. One month ago I was locked out of the account and was told it was "under review" and that no further information would be given. I contacted the Financial Ombudsman Service who say that the bank does not have to give me any information, and that they can withhold my funds indefinitely as long as they have a "good" reason (which they are not required to tell me). My family are in the middle of buying our first home and urgently need these savings to make the down payment, or we are likely to lose the house that we have chosen (and that we have spent a long time saving for and looking for). Is there anything further we can do if the FOS are saying that we just have to wait "indefinitely"? Can they really withhold our money for an indefinite number of months/years? Surely there is some further action we can take? Thanks for the help.
Page 2
    • eskbanker
    • By eskbanker 13th Oct 19, 6:55 PM
    • 11,867 Posts
    • 14,649 Thanks
    eskbanker
    Or from a sanctioned county....
    Originally posted by worried jim
    Didn't realise sanctions were applied at that granular a level and so close to home!
    • keef-WhatStandards
    • By keef-WhatStandards 13th Oct 19, 7:04 PM
    • 266 Posts
    • 28 Thanks
    keef-WhatStandards
    Oh yes, apparently the Republic of Yorkshire is particularly .........
    Keef - Sheerness, Kent UK
    • Ben8282
    • By Ben8282 13th Oct 19, 7:05 PM
    • 4,259 Posts
    • 2,353 Thanks
    Ben8282
    Let's back track a bit first. Why do you think they have done this? It's your account what have you done to make the bank suspicious? Multiple payments in from different sources? Allowing a third party to use the account? Running a business through a personal account? Banks don't just block access for no good reason.
    Originally posted by worried jim
    I agree with this response. Banks do not do this sort of thing on a whim.and would have raised the same question.
    The OP has answered this by saying that they had their account 'hacked' a couple of months previously. No details. No further explanation. Just that the account had been 'hacked', an extremely vague and ambiguous term which is in itself meaningless.
    Now most people dont have their accounts 'hacked' so we have the answer to why.
    • Gary_Dexter
    • By Gary_Dexter 13th Oct 19, 7:21 PM
    • 6,983 Posts
    • 4,645 Thanks
    Gary_Dexter
    Iíve just purchased a house and transferred a nigh-on 6 figure sum from a savings account, to my bank account, then straight out as a CHAPS payment.

    No questions were asked and nothing was put in hold.

    £10,000 took 10 years to save?
    • eskbanker
    • By eskbanker 13th Oct 19, 7:27 PM
    • 11,867 Posts
    • 14,649 Thanks
    eskbanker
    I agree with this response. Banks do not do this sort of thing on a whim.and would have raised the same question.
    The OP has answered this by saying that they had their account 'hacked' a couple of months previously. No details. No further explanation. Just that the account had been 'hacked', an extremely vague and ambiguous term which is in itself meaningless.
    Now most people dont have their accounts 'hacked' so we have the answer to why.
    Originally posted by Ben8282
    OP didn't actually say they'd been hacked, that was just some blind speculative hypothesising in the absence of any indication as to why they're blocking access....

    I can't think of anything other than my account being hacked at some point between when I last checked it successfully and when I found my access to be blocked (could have been a couple of months)? I don't have any reason to think this has happened though as I've always been very careful with my passwords etc. and never had anything hacked before.

    [...]

    Let's say my account was hacked (or something else I haven't thought of), why is it taking them so long to resolve this? Wouldn't they want information from me?
    Originally posted by User1234567
    • Ben8282
    • By Ben8282 13th Oct 19, 7:30 PM
    • 4,259 Posts
    • 2,353 Thanks
    Ben8282
    Rather unusual hypothesising though.
    • Terry Towelling
    • By Terry Towelling 13th Oct 19, 8:43 PM
    • 2,133 Posts
    • 1,778 Thanks
    Terry Towelling
    Can you tell us which bank it is, OP?
    • snowqueen555
    • By snowqueen555 14th Oct 19, 12:40 AM
    • 983 Posts
    • 654 Thanks
    snowqueen555
    I have noticed a from recent threads of frozen accounts that the first insinuation is that the OP is suspicious. I don't think that line of tone is particularly nice or helpful!
    • SingleSue
    • By SingleSue 14th Oct 19, 1:30 AM
    • 10,642 Posts
    • 60,439 Thanks
    SingleSue
    Rather unusual hypothesising though.
    Originally posted by Ben8282
    It's the one my parents automatically jump to if anything (and I mean anything, it doesn't have to be banking related) happens.

    The latest one is that their broadband router finally gave up the ghost after 11 years this weekend, their immediate response was not "Oh well, it's old, outdated and probably knackered", nope it was "We've been hacked!"

    I think they read too many magazines and scare stories in their daily newspaper....
    We made it! Two graduated, 1 currently at university, been hard work but it shows there is a possibility of a chance of normal (ish) life after a diagnosis (or two) of ASD. It's not been the easiest route but I am so glad I ignored everything and everyone and did my own therapies with them.
    Eldests' EDS diagnosis 4.5.10, mine 13.1.11 eekk!
    • User1234567
    • By User1234567 14th Oct 19, 3:34 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    User1234567
    Not sure how far you took your enquiries with the bank in the first instance.

    If you took the call handler at their first word and went straight to the Ombudsman, it may be worth making another call to the Bank starting with I seem to be locked out of my account to see if the response is the same.

    Slim possibility, but the call handler may have got it wrong. Online access can be suspended for a number of reasons quite separate from access to the account itself. Its a slim chance but if you genuinely have not undertaken any activity at all just maintained a long term savings account via inter account transfer, might be worth a try.
    Originally posted by warby68
    I've been on the phone to multiple people with the bank. My account is definitely locked out (they call it "under review"). They say that I can't speak to the people performing the review. I've made a formal complaint and been assigned a "complaints officer" (I think they're called) but that doesn't seem to have made any difference as they also say they can't do or tell me anything...
    • User1234567
    • By User1234567 14th Oct 19, 3:36 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    User1234567
    It's been to the FOS, if it wasn't blocked they would have told the OP so.
    Originally posted by meer53
    FOS have given me advice and information but they said they have a "new system" that could take up to a month for them to "see" my online-submitted complaint, and even once they've seen it it'll take [a further] one to two months for them to reach a decision...
    Last edited by User1234567; 14-10-2019 at 3:50 AM.
    • User1234567
    • By User1234567 14th Oct 19, 3:37 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    User1234567
    I had a similar experience from a building society that took over from an online saver.

    Turns out the online saver was US based and my DOB was transposed incorrectly from the US to the UK system. Month Date Year to Date Month Year.

    FOS were no help, I even sent them a copy of my birth certificate.
    Originally posted by keef-WhatStandards
    Thanks for this. How long did your situation take to resolve?
    • User1234567
    • By User1234567 14th Oct 19, 3:39 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    User1234567
    One of the things that banks are required to do is to carry out PEP (politically exposed person) and sanctions checks. While these are done at the time of account opening, account holders need to be re-checked from time to time. By the sounds of it, the usage of your account shouldn't be the cause of the problem, so it's possible that you've been flagged erroneously as a PEP or sanctioned individual (I presume by "public sector", you aren't an MP or similar).
    Originally posted by Migster
    Thanks. This is definitely a potential cause that I wasn't aware of. Is there anything I can do to try to highlight this as a potential error or do I just have to wait for them to figure it out?
    • User1234567
    • By User1234567 14th Oct 19, 3:43 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    User1234567
    Rather unusual hypothesising though.
    Originally posted by Ben8282
    I was asked [on this forum] what I had done to have caused this, and as I hadn't done anything, this was the only thing I could think of. I don't know if it's "unusual" or not but I can't think of anything else. Do you know any other reasons why they might have locked down my account without any obvious reason to the me as the account holder? Thanks
    Last edited by User1234567; 14-10-2019 at 3:50 AM.
    • User1234567
    • By User1234567 14th Oct 19, 3:47 AM
    • 12 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    User1234567
    Can you tell us which bank it is, OP?
    Originally posted by Terry Towelling
    Posting online was really a last resort and my partner and I agreed that I would limit details as much as possible. Does it make a difference which bank it is in terms of what I can do? There aren't many major UK banks and it is one of them.
    • boo_star
    • By boo_star 14th Oct 19, 5:09 AM
    • 2,883 Posts
    • 2,221 Thanks
    boo_star
    I have noticed a from recent threads of frozen accounts that the first insinuation is that the OP is suspicious. I don't think that line of tone is particularly nice or helpful!
    Originally posted by snowqueen555
    Banks aren't in the habit of freezing customer's accounts without reason, why would they?

    That's why the regulars are a bit sceptical when people claim "the bank closed my account but I did nothing wrong!"
    • boo_star
    • By boo_star 14th Oct 19, 5:12 AM
    • 2,883 Posts
    • 2,221 Thanks
    boo_star
    Posting online was really a last resort and my partner and I agreed that I would limit details as much as possible. Does it make a difference which bank it is in terms of what I can do? There aren't many major UK banks and it is one of them.
    Originally posted by User1234567
    Some are twitchier than others so yes, it does matter which bank it was.

    Also some posters may have more intimate knowledge if they know which bank it is.
    • Gary_Dexter
    • By Gary_Dexter 14th Oct 19, 7:51 AM
    • 6,983 Posts
    • 4,645 Thanks
    Gary_Dexter
    Posting online was really a last resort and my partner and I agreed that I would limit details as much as possible. Does it make a difference which bank it is in terms of what I can do? There aren't many major UK banks and it is one of them.
    Originally posted by User1234567
    Iím sure it will make zero difference naming the bank - and itís not like you can be identified from your generic username in this forum either
    • nyermen
    • By nyermen 14th Oct 19, 8:18 AM
    • 297 Posts
    • 227 Thanks
    nyermen
    OP - the problem here (as I think is clear from other posters) is that "review" most likely means its referred for compliance concerns. The "unlimited time without telling you why" indicates this.
    Thoughts:
    1) Whomever you spoke to sees very little - as the compliance department can't control every call center employee they won't risk putting any more info on the main bank systems. Ditto FOS's information at this stage - they can't just pick up the phone to the bank and get all the details of your account from them, there's a process.
    2) If it's a "big five" then they have a branch. Have you popped in with suitable ID, and tried to speak to someone (often there's people with "manager" on their name plates on the floor these days). Suggest that if the "review" team would like to contact you with any concerns you'll be happy to provide information (ie. source of funds). If nothing else, I'm sure the branch manager can put a note on the account.
    3) Urgent house purchase - what does your conveyancer think? I presume they'd already reviewed/confirmed your source of funds (as they have to for compliance reasons anyway).
    4) Is it all accounts or that one? Review your last statement for the account(s) frozen, see if there's anything different from normal - an extra payment you don't recognise (however small) etc.

    Sadly, the FOS is right however - they can hold funds if they have reason to - but won't longer than necessary as if there isn't a good reason they would be held to account later. I suspect, sadly, that your account may just be in a queue for review by the bank's compliance team, in which case maybe ask the bank (in branch) how long it typically takes. Or name them here for others to give a view on how long.
    Peter

    Debt free - finally finished paying off £20k + Interest.
    • nomorekids
    • By nomorekids 14th Oct 19, 8:24 AM
    • 341 Posts
    • 275 Thanks
    nomorekids
    Have you missed a communication from your bank requesting branch visit ? Could this be the reason for length of time and delay? I only say this as my son has been locked out of his account/account frozen following "suspicious" activity when he tried to transfer his next terms rent and not their interpretation "the bulk of his balance" from his student loan to an interest account.

    Passport and driving licence shown at the bank a few days later plus a few questions and explanations, thankfully at local branch to him so he didn't have to come home but annoyingly having had to make appointment when he thought he could just turn up and all is well. He is still miffed about having no access to his money for a few days and that the above simple enough transaction was enough to trigger HSBC fraud team into freezing the transfer and access to his funds.

    HSBC User123456? if so you are not alone, just saying
    If you want to be rich, most definitely never, ever have kids
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