Paul Gosling: Double the trouble as Abbey is called to account
Questions Of Cash
Saturday 15 November 2008
Q. Abbey has prevented me from accessing my account for three months after I attempted to change my bank account into a joint account with my husband. This caused me to miss credit-card payments, affecting my credit rating. To make matters worse, I have now received a Visa debit card addressed to me, but in the name of my husband. This is the seventh time that Abbey has done this. Abbey responded by asking me to complete a financial statement. I will not complete this as I do not have a debt problem, other than Abbey preventing me accessing my account. An adverse credit rating has been placed against me entirely because of Abbey's failings, and I have been unable to remortgage my house. To put these problems right, I have made four visits to Abbey's branches and I have found the bank completely unable to handle my phone calls seeking to resolve it. CB, Banbury.
A. Abbey does not wholly accept your version of events, but it does agree that it failed to process your account alterations efficiently. It does not accept that its actions led to you having financial difficulties. Abbey has paid £200 into your account as compensation for its mistakes, which you do not regard this as adequate. You are seeking £610, which you calculate on the basis of having spent 61 hours in sorting out the problem. You believe that £10 per hour is reasonable and quote guidance issued by the Financial Ombudsman Service. We think your compensation request is excessive if it is solely based on reimbursing you for your time and effort. While the FOS guidelines indicate that it can award compensation at a rate of £5 to £10 per hour spent in resolving problems, it also takes into account the amount of time that a customer might reasonably have taken to resolve a case. Given that your correspondence has tended to be long, it is probably optimistic to expect Abbey fully to meet the cost of your letters and emails. Abbey is willing to pay more than £200, if you can demonstrate actual financial loss. But you appear to be unprepared to compromise. As we are unable to assess whether your overall financial situation has been affected by Abbey's mistakes, we suggest that you take your case to the Financial Ombudsman.
Q. In the 14 months since I signed up to Abbey's 8 per cent current account, the bank has failed to pay the advertised interest rate. Instead I'm only being paid 2.5 per cent. Repeatedly the bank has assured me that my account qualified for the advertised rate. Eventually, an "adjustment" of £44 was credited to my account. I assumed this was the difference between the 2.5 per cent interest rate paid and the 8 per cent due – though there was no explanation. But when I checked, I realised that this represented only an extra 2 per cent. EF, Pinner.
A. Abbey applied interest at 2.5 per cent instead of at the promotional rate of 8 per cent on the first £2,500 in your account. When you complained, the branch incorrectly applied the correct rate only on the first £1,000 in your account. Abbey has now credited your account with another £150 – interest due of £93.50, plus just over £50 as a goodwill gesture of apology.
Q. You published a helpful response to a Scottish Power shareholder ("Why did Scottish Power need to track me down, for £149", Questions of Cash, 1 November). I was also approached by Georgeson offering me unpaid dividends in return for authorising a 10 per cent fee. I have also not moved, so I don't see why I should pay an agent to get me dividends I should have been paid. RR, Glasgow.
A. After contacting us, you went back through your old papers again and found an uncashed dividend cheque of £295.20. This was attached to other correspondence from Scottish Power and it was apparently not immediately obvious that it was a cheque. You accept that at least part of the responsibility for failing to be paid your due dividends lies with yourself. However, as a gesture of goodwill, Scottish Power is paying you all the outstanding dividends – more than £700 in total – without applying any administration fee.
Questions of Cash cannot give individual advice. But if you have a financial dilemma, we'll do our best to help. Please email us at: email@example.com
- 1 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 2 Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
- 3 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
- 4 Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
- 5 General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
HSBC review into moving headquarters from UK 'underway'
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you recently QCA Level 4 qu...
£20000 - £22500 per annum + OTE £30K: SThree: SThree Group have been well esta...
£25 - 30k: Guru Careers: We are seeking an Application Support Analyst / 1st L...
£45K - £55K (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a full stack .NET D...
Day In a Page
Surrounded by the Western fells, this five-bedroom Georgian home retains many original features including panel-plastered ceilings, sash windows and fireplaces.
This six-bedroom home is set amongst three acres of grounds. Currently a large family home, Clift Hill has potential to make a B&B, subject to change of use permissions.
A former period coach house, Glebe Farm Stable is now a three-bedroom cottage with a double car barn, office, kennels and an outbuilding that's currently used as a gym.
Set sail for this four-bedroom farmhouse in Cowes. With five acres of land and an indoor pool, this home oozes character. There is even potential to let a one-bedroom annexe.
Surrounded by woodland, this five-bedroom manor house has plenty of outdoor storage space in the form of three converted loose boxes, two smaller outhouses and a woodstore.
This four-bedroom detached home comes with a double carport, useful workshop, garden and two walkways that offer views of the adjacent countryside.
With space for an equestrian business, a greenhouse for growing your own veg, a wine store and a gym; this five-bedroom home has all the ingredients for a country retreat.
This four-bedroom home has exposed brick chimneys and a vaulted ceiling in a breakfast room that's ideal for summer entertaining - the doors open to the patio and garden.
The decked roof terrace of this two-bedroom flat is perfect for summer drinks while large windows and ample storage space make for a light and spacious interior.
Surrounded by approximately 15 acres of grounds, this six-bedroom grade II-listed home has been extensively refurbished yet retains many period features.
This four-bedroom home comes with a two-bedroom cottage and commercial office, with planning to extend, in a stunning courtyard setting.
In a pretty Norfolk village, this four-bedroom family home is surrounded by landscaped gardens, with even a self-contained annex for guests.
A few miles from the seaside at Perranporth, this four-bedroom farmhouse sits amongst nine acres of idyllic grounds - including a lake and two barns used as holiday lets.
This five-bedroom home is arranged over three floors of a converted Victorian hospital, offering spectacular views of the Pentland Hills - only three miles from the city centre.
This four-bedroom detached home comes with grounds that span to approximately 2.5 acres, as well as two large patio areas and a double garage.
This four-bedroom cottage is a Grade II-listed town house, well-located for the thriving market town of Nailsworth.
A four-bedroom apartment on the ground floor of a stunning period property in North Yorkshire, with two kitchens and a large south-west facing garden.
This high-spec two-bedroom home is part of a smart collection of new flats at Beaufort Park and has a large decked balcony that's perfect for summer drinks.
Capitalise on the fabulous views of Trevone Bay by taking two homes and creating one spacious boutique B&B. Just a cliff-top walk from Padstow.
Overlooking a golf course, this six-bedroom Edwardian detached home spans four storeys and retains many period features including the original, operational servants' bells...
On the edge of the city, this six-bedroom home comes with an outdoor swimming pool and a large garage block that has annexe potential.
In a Grade II-listed manor just outside of Bath, this three-bedroom home is arranged on two floors with a skylight in a vaulted roof line.
Open the living room's bi-fold wooden doors to reveal a retro-style kitchen, and a conservatory leading to a paved garden at this three-bedroom home.
A Grade II-listed, four-bedroom home, in a charming Somerset village, with a two-storey studio that could be converted into a holiday cottage
A modern four-bedroom Victorian home, within walking distance to the high street
A luxury apartment in the Gothic mansion of Wyfold Court in Kingwood, offers six bedrooms spread over three floors and a turret
This school conversion, near Stockwell Tube, oozes New York loft style. The one-bedroom flat features double height ceilings and exposed brick work
This six-bedroom Georgian home is on three floors with open fireplaces, a two-oven Aga, an annexe, and cottage gardens with outbuildings and a car barn
High Crest House covers an impressive 9384sq ft, with almost three acres of grounds including a tennis court and summer house enclosed by electric gates
A six-bedroom farmhouse with separate accommodation in converted stables. Situated in the village of Church Aston, within walking distance to the market town
A two-bedroom flat with under-heated walnut floors and bespoke built-in storage. The Tube and Clapham Common are a short stroll away
A refurbished seven-bedroom townhouse with staff quarters, cinema room, superb gym, steam room and plunge pool
A minimnalist four-bedroom home designed to the highest spec, featuring glass walls and a kitchen space lit by a glass roof
Hibernate during winter and make your living during the summer at this busy guesthouse with panoramic sea views, in the village of Lynton
A four-bedroom penthouse next to the Tate with direct views of St Paul's from two floors of luxurious living space
A four-bedroom detached home surrounded by spacious gardens and woodland, close to New Pudsey
An 18th-century, three-bedroom home near Langstone Harbour built from ships beams with vaulted ceilings and wood burning stoves
A five-bedroom semi-detached home with a mix of period and modern features in a popular and convenient location
This five-bedroom red-brick beauty overlooks the village green and sits in just under two acres of land
A three-bedroom villa with self-contained flat, minutes from Lake Windermere
A five-bedroom Victorian home with four receptions, superb gardens and paddock in Pembury
An eight-bedroom house on the south side of the The Green with cinema, wine cellars and summer house
This 17th century beauty is full of rustic cosiness, while the detached home office means you can also run a business
Four exclusive apartments in a Grade II-listed former medical school with 2,275 sq ft of living space and 18ft ceilings
A five-bedroom terraced house on the popular Peterborough Estate, ideally located for both Eel Brook Common and South Park
A state-of-the-art farm-building conversion on the former Cliveden Estate, with 11,420sq ft of internal space, cinema and wine cellar
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
A boutique mews house, set around a central courtyard, with three bedrooms and a private roof terrace