Questions Of Cash: 'Lloyds ignored my calls after I was a victim of fraud'
Saturday 08 August 2009
Q. In September last year, someone strolled into the Highgate Village branch of Lloyds TSB and withdrew £2,400 in cash from our account, using only a driving licence as identification. They also conducted some transfers between accounts, using my cash ISA allowance. On the following Monday I was called by Willesden Green branch to ask where I was and was I withdrawing more cash. Lloyds TSB repaid the money into my account promptly. I asked for a copy of the fake driving licence to see if it had my own identification number. I was called by someone telling me that all proper procedures had been followed. I didn't believe him. My letters and phone calls have since gone unanswered. The Financial Ombudsman Service told me it is not concerned with lousy service, only with financial loss. Eventually, Lloyds admitted it hadn't taken a copy of the driving licence. It added that even if it had it could not give it to me on data protection grounds as, by definition, it was not about me! Lloyds offered me £40 for a new driving licence, but I want the bank to promise to train staff to prevent it happening again. SA, Twickenham.
A. Our intervention "worked like magic", you say, in getting Lloyds to treat you with respect. Lloyds says: "While, as he rightly points out, we refunded the fraudulent transaction promptly after it was identified, we appreciate that we could have kept him much better informed... Our process was not followed correctly originally at the branch... Local interventions are being undertaken to ensure no re-occurrence of this." Lloyds will pay you £80 for a new driving licence and to compensate you for your inconvenience. You have accepted the offer, but will close your account – ending your family's 46 year history of banking with Lloyds.
Q. Can you help me with my Abbey account? I am 20 and was sacked a couple of weeks ago. I am now unemployed and looking for work and having a hard time getting Jobseeker's Allowance. This month I will be charged £90 by Abbey, on top of about £500 in earlier charges. I asked for the charges to be refunded, but Abbey says these requests are on hold. I am in financial hardship and cannot afford these charges. I live with my parents and have to rely on hand-outs from them. JF, Lancashire.
A. Abbey agreed to refund £130.80 to your account as a gesture of goodwill. This now puts your account into credit. We asked Abbey to consider refunding the reported £500 of bank charges on the grounds of financial hardship. The bank disagrees with your calculation of its previous charges. But Abbey also says that it applies tests to determine whether a person can legitimately argue they are in financial hardship. Your pattern of high spending on non-essential items means that you fail its hardship test.
We previously obtained a refund of bank charges for you from Royal Bank of Scotland. There is clearly an underlying problem that you spend too much for your income. In particular, you need to take serious and urgent action to put an end to the £40 monthly charges from Abbey, which you clearly cannot afford. The bank suggests you discuss with it moving to a different account with a more appropriate charging structure.
You also have problems with serious debts which have arisen from taking out three mobile phone contracts simultaneously, in part to obtain new handsets when older phones stopped working. You told us that one of the contracts, with 3, had been a waste of money as you were unable to obtain a signal at either work or home and that you are now being chased by debt collectors for £150 in unpaid mobile charges. We took this up with 3 to see if some arrangement could be reached, recognising that the contract should have been cancelled at the outset. However, you have now stopped responding to emails from us and 3 to discuss these debts.
Your habit of unaffordable spending already seems ingrained, but needs to change if you are not to suffer from even more serious problems. The first of these is that you risk going to court in the near future for non-payment of a mobile phone bill.
You must face up to the realities of your income and spending. Failing to respond to attempts to resolve those problems only makes them worse. You should speak to a Citizens Advice or other debt counsellor as a matter of urgency. Abbey has also offered to assist with its own financial management advice service.
Q. I took out a mobile broadband deal with T-Mobile through Carphone Warehouse in October 2008. The internet connection was very slow and I felt it was not adequate for the fee I was paying and the service I was sold. I went back to the Carphone Warehouse two weeks later and tried to return it. I was told that the 14-day exchange policy does not apply to T-Mobile customers. I was not informed of this when I took out the package and it is barely readable on my contract. I have since been told that this is illegal, as if it does not fulfil the specifications and use it was intended for, which I feel it does not, I should receive a full refund. I have contacted both parties and had inadequate responses from them. T-Mobile informed me two months ago that it was dealing with my complaint, but I have heard no more. DO, Bexley.
A. T-Mobile and Carphone Warehouse have agreed that you can return the equipment via the Carphone Warehouse branch. T-Mobile will refund you all charges from the beginning of the contract.
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
Donald MacInnes: 'I have to have £500 a month spare from now until at least 2035'
HSBC becomes first bank to offer five-year fixed rate mortgage with interest rate under 2%
Are finance apps stealing your personal data?
Crippling PFI deals leave Britain £222bn in debt
Pension freedoms: How to deal with cold calls from scammers
- 1 Rarest Beanie Baby bought for just £10 at car boot sale could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 2 Katie Hopkins and The Sun editor David Dinsmore reported to police for incitement to racial hatred following migrant boat column
- 3 Giorgio Armani criticises the way some gay men dress saying 'a man has to be a man'
- 4 Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
- 5 Australian student Tommy Connolly, 23, adopts his pregnant, homeless 17-year-old cousin to give her a chance at 'a better life'
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
iJobs Money & Business
£60000 - £70000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£30 - 35k (DOE): Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pricing Analyst with experienc...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£21000 - £24000 per annum: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group has been engaged b...
Day In a Page
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
A four-bedroom farm-conversion with three bathrooms and two reception rooms
A two-bedroom detached house with ensuite bathrooms and a sun-drenched decked terrace, £750,000
A modern and spacious two-bedroom, penthouse flat with two bathrooms in a prestigious development
A beautifully renovated five-bedroom terrace with three reception rooms and a courtyard garden, £700,000