April 15, 2020

Can I reclaim monthly bank account fees?


Crystal Group

“A Packaged Bank Account (PBA) can be great, but they can also be a useless waste of money.”

A PBA is an account where you pay a monthly fee in exchange for various benefits, often in the form of bundled insurance policies. If you need the insurance your PBA offers, the account can be the cheapest way of obtaining many types of cover. However, if you were sold a PBA you don’t need, you reclaim packaged bank account fees.

Mis-sold PBA – can I reclaim my monthly bank account fees?

Was your PBA mis-sold to you?

You were probably mis-sold your PBA if your bank failed to check that the insurance cover included with the account was suitable for you at the time you signed up.

The mis-selling categories are outlined below. If one or more of these applies to you, you could reclaim the fees you’ve been charged.

PBA mis-selling checklist

  1. You were told you had to have a PBA to get another product, e.g., a loan or mortgage

If you were told that you had to sign up to a PBA to get a mortgage, loan, or other product, this is blatant mis-selling.

You should have been told that there was a free current account alternative and that your decision would not impact on approval for any other product or account.

  1. You had an existing medical condition, or you were too old for the insurance to be valid

Most PBAs include travel insurance as one of their benefits. If the bank didn’t check your eligibility for travel cover at the time you signed up for the account, or if they failed to check you were still eligible for the insurance each year, you could be entitled to a claim.

  1. You were misled into signing up for the PBA

There are a number of examples of customers being misled into signing up for a PBA, including:

  • the product wasn’t fully explained
  • told you were eligible to claim on the insurance policies when you weren’t
  • wrongly promised substantial discounts on other products if you signed up for a PBA
  • you weren’t told the full cost of the PBA

In many cases, customers have complained that the salesman was very pushy and wouldn’t take no for an answer. That tactic also counts as mis-selling!

  1. The PBA monthly fee was increased without notice

If your bank increased the account fee without giving you notice, you are entitled to reclaim the fees.

  1. You weren’t told about the fee

If you didn’t realise you’d been sold a paid-for account until you noticed the fee on your bank statement, you’ve either been mis-sold or the bank has upgraded your account without your permission. In either case, you’ve been mis-sold.

  1. You were told you couldn’t cancel the PBA

This potential mis-sale is hard to prove, but it does happen. If you tried to cancel the account but were told outright that you couldn’t, you’ve got a case for a reclaim. However, if the bank sales person strongly encouraged you to keep the PBA, you could be on shaky ground.

  1. You were told you couldn’t have an overdraft unless you signed up for the PBA

Many customers were told that they could only have an overdraft if they signed up for a PBA. However, if you can show that you could have had an overdraft at the level you wanted on an ordinary current account, you could have been mis-sold.

  1. You were told that having a PBA would improve your credit score

Taking out a PBA won’t improve your credit score. However, some customers were told that it would. This is blatant mis-selling and if it happened to you, you will have grounds to reclaim.

In conclusion

PBAs can be extremely useful, provided you actually need and use the benefits they offer.

If you’ve been mis-sold a PBA that you didn’t want or don’t need, you may be able to reclaim packaged bank account charges. For more advice on how to reclaim account fees that you’ve been charged, speak to an expert financial advisor today.

See how Crystal can help you

If a financial company has failed to spend time understanding your requirements and you end up taking out a product which is unsuitable for your needs, you may have grounds for a claim.

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