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  • FIRST POST
    • geoffibs
    • By geoffibs 10th Apr 18, 3:04 PM
    • 18Posts
    • 11Thanks
    geoffibs
    Halifax suspended account.
    • #1
    • 10th Apr 18, 3:04 PM
    Halifax suspended account. 10th Apr 18 at 3:04 PM
    My father has terminal leukaemia and has chosen to come home. Apart from pain management all treatment has stopped and it is purely palliative care.

    He wanted to transfer around 1700 (leaving 1 in) from his Halifax savings account to his Natwest current account so he can sort out his affairs and give some money to his family "with a warm hand" as the saying goes because he thought this would be easier.

    He went online and couldn't remember the passwords so reset them easily enough and started the transfer. On the final page it stated it was pending and to call their what we now know was the fraud number.

    Being 83 he couldn't remember half the things they asked and so they have suspended the account as they weren't satisfied he was genuine. They advised he could go into the local branch with ID and it would be released. He told them he was bed-ridden and on oxygen and she said "how can you be making this call then" Clearly she has no understanding of nasal oxygen delivery (6ml rate so not a small amount either!). She said there was nothing she could do. I asked for solutions and eventually she said it may be possible for a home visit to verify id. I had to keep on at her saying there must be a solution for this sort of situation as she wasn't going to even tell me that.

    I went to my local branch to see if they would do a home visit under the circumstances and they were great and the Manager was happy to, subject to director approval. I received a call later that day to say approval wasn't granted. The decision was made by the Directors and security team. I asked them what I could do and they said as far as Halifax were concerned, unless my father can go to the branch in with I.D. then there is nothing. The account will remain blocked.

    I have lodged a formal complaint but heard nothing. It has only been a week but my Dad is distraught. He wants everything finalised and in order. The day it happened he needed medication as he got so upset by it.

    I understand the fraud side of things and it is actually reassuring. (although no need for the snotty comment they made). The issue is that they have my fathers money and he has no means of getting it. Halifax just refuse a home visit. I asked for other ways to resolve it and they said sorry, there is nothing they can do. I even suggested a doctors letter to re-enforce his inability to attend physically. It all fell on deaf ears. They just didn't want to know.

    The Ombudmans site says something along the lines of they won't be able to help until complaints procedure with bank is complete or 8 weeks after formal complaint I think it is but it will be too late then.

    I enquired about closing the account but because he opened it online, there is no record of his signature so they can't close it by hand written letter. It can't be closed online because it is frozen. The local branch sympathises with me but has said there is nothing they can do.I have even offered to pay for the home visit but this was also refused.

    As well as the upset of this and he can't do what he wants with his own money, my father being old school believes the money will be lost when he passes no matter how much I try to reassure him. This is really eating at him literally on his deathbed. I can't believe the bank is so heartless. Even the local branch said they can sometimes be too black and white about things. I have obviously offered to give him the money and I will sort later but he gets frustrated and says it's not the same as he wants HIS money to give out as he pleases. He feels it wouldn't be finalised in his mind. I can understand that.

    Any idea on what he can do and quite quickly? Sorry this is a little emotive but I just want my pops at ease. The poor fella has been through enough.

    Thank you for listening and any advice.
    Last edited by geoffibs; 10-04-2018 at 3:08 PM.
Page 2
    • xylophone
    • By xylophone 14th Apr 18, 2:57 PM
    • 26,139 Posts
    • 15,496 Thanks
    xylophone
    https://www.halifax.co.uk/securityandprivacy/privacy/proving-your-identity/

    It says "bring", but would it be possible for certified documents to be sent by post or taken down to the branch by a family member?

    Perhaps his doctor/priest/solicitor etc would be willing to certify?

    Otherwise, set up a simple loan agreement letter. Your father acknowledges the debt and you claim the money back from his estate after his passing?
    Last edited by xylophone; 14-04-2018 at 3:06 PM. Reason: add bold
    • geoffibs
    • By geoffibs 14th Apr 18, 3:25 PM
    • 18 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    geoffibs
    I've tried these :-(

    They won't accept anything from a doctor. Not sure about a solicitor but they have said they will not accept anything other than him in person as it is a security issue.

    They also won't accept anything brought in or anything to be sent. They keep saying there is nothing they can do. There is though - they can come to his house!

    I've offered the loan. My dad simply doesn't want to do the loan thing as he believes this money will be lost and I'll never get it (old school) no matter how much I reassure him. He feels it is unfinished business. He wants his own money and he is so wound up about not getting it. I understand that.
    • Westie983
    • By Westie983 14th Apr 18, 3:30 PM
    • 4,519 Posts
    • 15,051 Thanks
    Westie983
    I would make the assumption that there is no signature on file, otherwise you could have taken in a letter signed by your father.

    The solution I can see is to get 3rd party access on the savings account and then you can withdraw or raise a counter cheque from the account. Go into your branch and ask for 3rd party access form. Its about six pages long but it will allow you to withdraw once registered.

    What is the savings account that your father has?

    Westie983
    Save 12k in 2018 #10 Total (25,000)+13,000/12,000 = 108.33%
    Sealed Pot Challenge ~ 11 #97 Total (410) + 40/500 = 8.00% ( x 11)
    Xmas 2018 1 a Day #2 Total 62.59/365 = 17.14%
    Virtual Sealed Pot #1 Total 1200/1000 = 120.00%
    2 Savers Club 2018 #16 Total (1500)+-470/2000 = 51.50%

    Total 15,332.59/15,865 = 96.64%

    I'm a Board Guide on Budgeting & Bank Accounts, Debt-Free Wannabe, Disability Money Matters, and Savings & Investments. I'm a volunteer helping the boards run smoothly, but I'm not a moderator, and do not read all posts. If you see an inappropriate/illegal post then email forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
    • pmduk
    • By pmduk 14th Apr 18, 6:18 PM
    • 8,857 Posts
    • 6,595 Thanks
    pmduk
    This is the sort of story the Daily Mail loves. Why not try their financial journalists?
    • TrickyDicky101
    • By TrickyDicky101 14th Apr 18, 8:14 PM
    • 3,096 Posts
    • 2,021 Thanks
    TrickyDicky101
    I've just tried to follow up on the complaint. Nobody would chase for me so tried through the Halifax Cancer care line and they enquired for me.

    Guess what? There is no record even though I have a confirmation email. Nothing they can do, I have to start the process again.

    I just can't believe this.
    Originally posted by geoffibs
    Write to your MP and include that you have tried using the internal complaints process but Halifax has even lost its record of your complaint and thus they are saying the 8 week limit is reset. Copy in the CEO's office of Halifax (I expect you can get the address via Google).

    Your father has been treated badly.
    • PeacefulWaters
    • By PeacefulWaters 14th Apr 18, 8:18 PM
    • 8,318 Posts
    • 10,667 Thanks
    PeacefulWaters
    No cheque book unfortunately as it's a saving account.

    I've not asked another manager but every dept. I've spoken to when they look at the notes on the account tell me there is nothing they can do, a decision has been made at director level. The local branch manager was all for helping but didn't get the all clear from above.

    Nobody will give me any names or contacts of decision makers, they just keep hiding behind "the decision is final."
    Originally posted by geoffibs
    Did you read post #15?
    • Flobberchops
    • By Flobberchops 15th Apr 18, 8:20 PM
    • 792 Posts
    • 590 Thanks
    Flobberchops
    That's a really rotten situation, sorry to hear about this.

    I work at a bank (not Halifax) and I'm surprised a home visit requires Director-level clearance. Identification and verification can be done face-to-face (as evidenced by the requests for your father to present himself in branch) so why couldn't an equivalent process be carried out at the bedside?

    At any rate I wouldn't be satisfied with this "final decision" statement. As a complainant you are entitled to receive a final resolution letter even if the bank rules against you, which is what's required to then escalate to FOS. I would say go back to the branch and make very, very clear that you want to log a complaint, immediately and face-to-face, through the official process. You can then try the FOS or even go to the media - I agree it's very unreasonable that they haven't offered your father a single practical avenue to resolving the problem and accessing his money. An obligation to maintain security has to be weighed against the bank's duty of care to their customers.

    Best of luck, keep us updated.
    I work for a UK bank, but any comments made on this forum are solely my personal opinion. Caveat Emptor!
    • PeacefulWaters
    • By PeacefulWaters 15th Apr 18, 8:50 PM
    • 8,318 Posts
    • 10,667 Thanks
    PeacefulWaters
    That's a really rotten situation, sorry to hear about this.

    I work at a bank (not Halifax) and I'm surprised a home visit requires Director-level clearance. Identification and verification can be done face-to-face (as evidenced by the requests for your father to present himself in branch) so why couldn't an equivalent process be carried out at the bedside?

    At any rate I wouldn't be satisfied with this "final decision" statement. As a complainant you are entitled to receive a final resolution letter even if the bank rules against you, which is what's required to then escalate to FOS. I would say go back to the branch and make very, very clear that you want to log a complaint, immediately and face-to-face, through the official process. You can then try the FOS or even go to the media - I agree it's very unreasonable that they haven't offered your father a single practical avenue to resolving the problem and accessing his money. An obligation to maintain security has to be weighed against the bank's duty of care to their customers.

    Best of luck, keep us updated.
    Originally posted by Flobberchops
    All correct information.

    I do, however, think pursuing it to the top within LBG should work faster than the FOS.

    As the FOS cannot demand a bank do business with anybody it's highly unlikely that route will be effective.
    • geoffibs
    • By geoffibs 16th Apr 18, 8:22 AM
    • 18 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    geoffibs
    Did you read post #15?
    Originally posted by PeacefulWaters
    Yes but everybody is blocking me - as soon as they read the notes they keep saying the decision is final. I've asked for it to be taken further and everybody keeps saying they can't do anything. Even my local branch said try the Ombudsman.

    I'd love to see what is in these notes.
    • geoffibs
    • By geoffibs 16th Apr 18, 8:27 AM
    • 18 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    geoffibs
    All correct information.

    I do, however, think pursuing it to the top within LBG should work faster than the FOS.

    As the FOS cannot demand a bank do business with anybody it's highly unlikely that route will be effective.
    Originally posted by PeacefulWaters
    I'm looking for somebody to write to there that hopefully can help.

    I posted a link to here on their Twitter page and someone sent me a PM saying they have no access to it so will I explain. I did but just silence.
    • cloud_dog
    • By cloud_dog 16th Apr 18, 10:49 AM
    • 3,804 Posts
    • 2,260 Thanks
    cloud_dog
    I'm looking for somebody to write to there that hopefully can help.

    I posted a link to here on their Twitter page and someone sent me a PM saying they have no access to it so will I explain. I did but just silence.
    Originally posted by geoffibs
    PeacefulWaters has provided you with the e-mail address of the top man, LLoyds CEO. E-Mail him.

    Write to them:

    25 Gresham Street
    London
    EC2V 7HN
    Personal Responsibility - Sad but True

    Sometimes.... I am like a dog with a bone
    • Robin9
    • By Robin9 16th Apr 18, 10:59 AM
    • 2,959 Posts
    • 1,960 Thanks
    Robin9
    Antonio Osirio as per post #15

    Write to the address above but also email and attach the letter.
    Never pay on an estimated bill
    • geoffibs
    • By geoffibs 16th Apr 18, 11:18 AM
    • 18 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    geoffibs
    Sorry, I wasn't clear sooner - was convinced I'd put down that I'd mailed and expected it to be ignored as it would be passed to someone else. I did mail thank you but had no response as of yet. The mail didn't bounce though so looks like a mailbox still exists on the end of it.

    I'm feeling a little negative at the moment.

    I'm also looking after my Dad and haven't slept in two weeks properly so things are just merging together. I'm not being clear.

    I really do appreciate everyone's help.
    Thank you.
    • letitbe90
    • By letitbe90 16th Apr 18, 11:27 AM
    • 85 Posts
    • 95 Thanks
    letitbe90
    Working at a bank previously - I can say that there are some very sophisticated fraud that goes on that a lot of the public will not be aware of, we are talking not far off Oceans Eleven. The banks end up being between a rock and a hard place where they have to make security measures so strict even when we know it will affect normal customers.

    It is like how we have to go through so much security and clearance through the airport, in case that 1 dodgy geezer comes through.

    Try not be too hard on the bank, but do realise that security has to be super tight and you will probably have to jump through ropes to get the money - but it is only to make it much more harder for fraudsters to steal peoples money.

    In this case, your father was unable to pass security over the phone and he is also unable to come to the branch - two security fences that he couldn't commit to. If the banks became too lax on this, mark my word, fraudsters will find ways to abuse the system process. Even with the home visit, there are certain security concerns that the security team have to follow.

    I am sorry for the inconvenience - and I hope it gets resolved shortly. Due to fraudsters and those who try make things difficult, unforuntately there is no perfect process for customers that can really exist - and your father has unfortunately come to a situation which is fortunarely rare. I think maybe more should be done to possible promote Power of Attourney being set up for elderly in case of these situations.
    • cloud_dog
    • By cloud_dog 16th Apr 18, 12:37 PM
    • 3,804 Posts
    • 2,260 Thanks
    cloud_dog
    Whilst I only empathise with the OPs situation and the emotional turmoil they must be going through, this is a prime example where LPA should have been initiated earlier.

    I speak through experience, not as heart wrenching as the OPs but, my mother was stricken with a water infection, simple you may think, but it wasn't really noticed and untreated it went on to significantly affect her mental faculties. It took her over 18 months to return to a more 'normal' state. Luckily we were able to implement an LPA once the situation became apparent.
    Personal Responsibility - Sad but True

    Sometimes.... I am like a dog with a bone
    • geoffibs
    • By geoffibs 16th Apr 18, 3:17 PM
    • 18 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    geoffibs
    ...snip

    In this case, your father was unable to pass security over the phone and he is also unable to come to the branch - two security fences that he couldn't commit to. If the banks became too lax on this, mark my word, fraudsters will find ways to abuse the system process. Even with the home visit, there are certain security concerns that the security team have to follow.

    snip.....
    Originally posted by letitbe90
    Nobody is disagreeing with the security at all. We are actually reassured by it. BUT - the nature of their business dictates there have to be things in place so people can get their money in difficult circumstances outside of the regular security protocols. These things are in place now for that very reason.

    This is still not the banks money and this is the risk they take in the business they are in. Yes, there is only so far they can go because in your own words, there is no perfect process and if banks want to be custodians of peoples money then they should accept all parts of the responsibility providing the customer discharges theirs - my father has done nothing wrong don't forget, it just appears fraudulent when it actually isn't. They have in place a system for this but point blank refuse to implementing it.

    That is the issue, not the security. As you say, there is potential for all systems can be exploited so at what point do they decide not to give implement a security practice in case it is exploited? Yes he failed the previous two. Well, he didn't actually fail to be fair, he was slow in getting the answers because he couldn't remember in time and he was dismissed, and the physical attendance is obviously something they come across often or they wouldn't have home visits.

    So yes, I can be hard on the bank considering I got the ok off the local branch manager initially.
    • geoffibs
    • By geoffibs 16th Apr 18, 3:22 PM
    • 18 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    geoffibs
    Whilst I only empathise with the OPs situation and the emotional turmoil they must be going through, this is a prime example where LPA should have been initiated earlier.

    I speak through experience, not as heart wrenching as the OPs but, my mother was stricken with a water infection, simple you may think, but it wasn't really noticed and untreated it went on to significantly affect her mental faculties. It took her over 18 months to return to a more 'normal' state. Luckily we were able to implement an LPA once the situation became apparent.
    Originally posted by cloud_dog
    Everything is good in hindsight. There's lots of things he wished he had done. He was out shopping in the morning he was taken to hospital....

    Rightly or wrongly, my Dad always thought he would just pop off one night and not have chance to organise things and everything is taken care of in his will. He never actually thought he would ever be in this situation.

    Maybe more general awareness is what is needed. Like you, I never thought I'd be in this position myself.
    • agrinnall
    • By agrinnall 16th Apr 18, 6:06 PM
    • 20,718 Posts
    • 16,556 Thanks
    agrinnall
    Rightly or wrongly, my Dad always thought he would just pop off one night and not have chance to organise things and everything is taken care of in his will. He never actually thought he would ever be in this situation.
    Originally posted by geoffibs

    Well, if the will already specifies what he wants to happen to the money then, as I suggested right at the start of the thread, he really doesn't need to do anything now, the money will get distributed according to his wishes eventually (hopefully later rather than sooner).
    • KJSmith
    • By KJSmith 16th Apr 18, 6:58 PM
    • 145 Posts
    • 77 Thanks
    KJSmith
    N...They have in place a system for this but point blank refuse to implementing it
    ...
    the physical attendance is obviously something they come across often or they wouldn't have home visits.
    Originally posted by geoffibs
    Halifax does not routinely do home visits. It is considered an exception to their usual processes which as you have found is therefore subject to approval beyond the Branch Manager and a risk assessment. I imagine the reason for not being able to do a home visit will lie in this risk assessment but I can't see them sharing the details of this with you.

    If I was in your position I would be doing as you have and resubmitting your complaint. You might find that the allocated Complaint Manager is also empowered to consider process exceptions for vulnerable customers.
    Last edited by KJSmith; 16-04-2018 at 7:05 PM.
    • Emily Joy
    • By Emily Joy 17th Apr 18, 9:32 AM
    • 154 Posts
    • 67 Thanks
    Emily Joy
    The lesson learnt if you are not sure you can pass the security check and you know you are not able to visit the branch in person don't even try and ask for a 3rd party access form instead.
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