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How To Solve Banking Disputes

Aug 17, 2007
If you believe your bank has made a mistake or you are having a dispute with them, it might seem like you will never get the problem sorted. Although solving banking disputes can be tricky, if you follow the right course of action then you can solve banking disputes fairly and without developing a bad relationship with your bank.

What disputes?

There are a number of issues that can arise that might cause a dispute with your bank. Perhaps you are sure that you did not make a payment on your account, or you believe your bank has incorrectly charged you a penalty fee. Your bank could even have calculated your balance wrong or wrongly removed money from your account. Whatever the problem, you need to remain calm about the situation and follow certain procedures.

Get things in writing

If you have a problem with your bank or they have a problem with you, then make sure you get all procedures and reasons for them in writing. If you bank does not write to you, then write a letter to them explaining the problem. Getting things in writing can often help to iron out misunderstandings and set the ground for mediation.

Read the small print

If you have a dispute with your bank, then make sure you read all of your policies in detail before protesting. It may be that your bank is within its rights or is correct in the procedure it has carried out. Make sure that you have a case before beginning to query something.

Don't be aggressive

If you are aggressive, threatening or abusive towards your bank or members of its staff then no matter how right you are they are not likely to listen. It could also result in you having to move your accounts from the bank altogether. Even if the situation is extremely frustrating, remain calm and rational because you are much more likely to be listened to this way.

Meet face to face

If a dispute cannot be sorted in writing or over the phone, then try and meet with your bank manager or another bank representative in person. This will help you to get a better idea of what the problem is and hopefully reach a mutually agreeable solution.

Banking is business

Remember that any decision that is made either for or against you is not personal. Banking is a business and they are likely to put their needs ahead of yours. However, if it is within their power to sort the problem out, then they usually will do so as they want to keep you as a customer.

Seek advice if unhappy

If you have tried negotiating with your bank and you are still unhappy, then seek advice from an independent financial advisor or banking disputes company. Although most disputes are simply sorted out with a letter or phone call, some are more complex and may take time to reach an agreement. If you are patient and have evidence to support your claim, then you are likely to get the decision you want.
About the Author
Peter Kenny is a writer for The Thrifty Scot.
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