STROLLING ROUND the auction rooms at Stephan Welz/Sotheby’s last weekend, another colleague came upon Jean Doyle’s delightful bronze sculpture of The Cellist. She was reminded of the acerbic wit of conductor Sir Thomas Beecham when once confronted by a cellist. “Madam,” he said, “between your legs you have an instrument that could thrill thousands and all you do is sit and scratch it.” MAYBE FIRST NATIONAL BANK needs some help, a colleague of Piker suggests. Does the bank not realise that once a client is dead, it’s impossible to provide Fica compliancy? Fica requires “a document proving your residential address”. That stipulation thus implies a direct line to heaven, hell, purgatory or wherever.
An utterly ludicrous situation arose when a client, in trying to pay off a R1 500 credit card debt of the deceased, was told by FNB: “The account is frozen. We can’t take your money until our KYC (Know Your Client) department receives the necessary Fica documents enabling us to effect transactions.”
For the record, the bank’s deceased estates section had been sent a death certificate four weeks before. Yet after that date FNB sent two letters addressed to the deceased: the first one asking for Fica documents, the second threatening “to hand your account over to our attorneys”.
Despite alerting FNB’s Credit Card division by email of the chain of events, the latest KYC caller still insisted the account would remain frozen until the Fica documents were provided…
FNB, how can we help you?