Post Of­fice doesn’t want my £250k

The Daily Telegraph - Your Money - - FRONT PAGE -

Would you kindly throw your weight behind my cur­rent prob­lem with the Post Of­fice?

I ob­tained the de­tails of its On­line Saver ac­count and sub­mit­ted the re­quired ev­i­dence and my cheque for £250,000.

It then claimed that the copy of my wife’s pass­port and our joint bank ac­count state­ment, both au­then­ti­cated by my ac­coun­tant, were not ac­cept­able.

Af­ter three abortive phone calls, I wrote again. KEITH RAWL­INGS, KENT

This was to be a joint ac­count, yet it seemed that the Post Of­fice did not want your money.

Post Of­fice Money said the doc­u­men­ta­tion was not what was re­quired. It said: “Iden­tity and ad­dress proof cer­ti­fi­ca­tion was not ac­cept­able for Mrs Su­san Rawl­ings. This means we can’t open your On­line Saver ac­count yet. So we’ve re­turned your de­posit cheque, along with the orig­i­nal doc­u­ments you sent.”

Your calls got you nowhere. Post Of­fice Money did not re­ply to your sec­ond let­ter. It was only af­ter my in­volve­ment that a Post Of­fice spokesman said: “We would like to apol­o­gise to Mr Rawl­ings for the er­ror we made on this oc­ca­sion, not pro­cess­ing his funds and doc­u­ments.”

It con­tacted you and paid the in­ter­est you would have re­ceived. It also sent £100 for good­will.

You used to be an in­de­pen­dent fi­nan­cial ad­viser and won­der how any firm, let alone one as prom­i­nent as the Post Of­fice, can treat a prospec­tive cus­tomer like this and re­ject them in such a cav­a­lier fash­ion.

You have now put £100,000 into the ac­count rather than the higher sum you orig­i­nally in­tended. The rest has gone to an­other bank. in the pre­vi­ous six weeks. You had sup­plied cer­ti­fied copies of your cur­rent year’s coun­cil tax de­mand and a let­ter from the Pen­sion Ser­vice no­ti­fy­ing you of your Win­ter Fuel Pay­ment. You are dis­abled and re­cov­er­ing from a can­cer op­er­a­tion.

HSBC has now of­fered a home visit af­ter you re­ceive your HMRC let­ter or ben­e­fits no­ti­fi­ca­tion in April. It said some­one would pho­to­graph the doc­u­ments on an HSBC Black­Berry, and then up­date them on its sys­tems. It has given you £50 for good­will, which doesn’t seem overly gen­er­ous.

Mean­while, I doubt I can change HSBC for you. Its record-keep­ing and com­mu­ni­ca­tions be­tween dif­fer­ent parts of the busi­ness some­times leave some­thing to be de­sired and, like sev­eral of its coun­ter­parts, it tends to make too many care­less mis­takes.

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