Are packaged bank accounts on a time limit?

Are packaged bank accounts on a time limit?

With the recent introduction of a time limit concerning the mis-sale of Payment Protection Insurance (PPI), that being the end of August 2019, people are concerned that the same form of time limit will apply to other forms of claims, such as packaged bank accounts.

This is not the case and packaged bank accounts can still be challenged, although there can be time frames as to how far back the account facility can be challenged which depends upon whether you knew the facility was available, or not.

Are packaged bank accounts the same as PPI?

Packaged bank account facilities are completely different to PPI, although they were set up in the same way, namely the banks wanted to make a few extra pounds and pence off their consumers by attaching a product which, if it was sold incorrectly, was completely worthless and costly to the consumer involved.

Packaged bank account facilities included, as they say, a package of facilities for a particular account. Normally you are charged around £15 to £20 per month and the cover includes travel insurance, breakdown cover, some sort of cheap ticket deals that you could get if you were that way inclined, cheaper admissions for National Trust venues and so on.  for a number, they do not and have provided no help or benefit to the consumer and have been costly.

What are packaged bank accounts?

Packaged bank accounts are another way that the banks can use to raise money from clients who ultimately do not have a huge level of requirement of the bank.  It can generate considerable profits for the bank by paying a premium each month to cover a variety of different areas ranging from travel insurance to breakdown cover.

Packaged bank account facilities have always been sold as an upgraded version of a current account making the alleged beneficiary feel that much better about themselves, but ultimately if the product itself was of no use or benefit to the client, then it can be costly.

Many people were not given the option in taking the facility in the first place, which denotes a mis-sale and, as such, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) investigated the banks and found severe weaknesses.   That is where a mis-sale takes place.

What is wrong with packaged bank accounts?

Ultimately, there is not anything wrong with packaged bank account facilities.  They can be extremely useful.  However, this is as long as you know that the cover is in place and what parts of the cover you can or cannot use, including all limitations to the cover.

The problem with the packaged bank account is not the account itself, it is the person who is recommending or selling it.

If it is not established that the account itself is worthwhile and useful and will provide benefits and savings to you as a consumer of the bank then it is no good and it will therefore have been mis-sold.

As a result, if this was mis-sold then we can look at recovering the premiums back for you.  

What could I get back if I challenged my packaged bank account?

If you challenge the packaged bank account, and we can establish that it was mis-sold, then we would look at obtaining a refund in relation to the account fees that were charged, along with interest and any other fees that were attributed to the account as a result of the account facility fees being taken out in the first place.

Depending upon the length of time that the account has been in operation, a number of refunds will range between £1,500 and £2,000 (including the interest).  Some can of course be less and on some occasions we have seen quite considerable refunds over £3,500.

Martin Knipe