1. Expert Q&A: Benefits - Weds 23 October, 3-4pm

    Our next expert Q&A will be on the topic of benefits. It will be hosted by Lauren from our Knowledge Services team. She'll be answering your questions on Wednesday 23 October between 3-4pm.

    You can either post your question >here< or email them to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll be happy to ask them on your behalf.

So why do financial institutions have to make everything so difficult?

Discussion in 'After dementia — dealing with loss' started by jenniferpa, Aug 18, 2007.

  1. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,439
    #1 jenniferpa, Aug 18, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 18, 2007
    Because of the difficulties involved with distance I went round all the finacial institutions that my mother had dealings with giving certified copies of the death certificate, details of the solicitors, plus handing over my ID to prove who I was. This morning I get a request from ...... (a bank I will be very happy to never have any dealings with again) asking for the same information. This means I'm going to have to go to a notary public to certify everything and repeat the whole process from here. I really wonder why I bothered. Actually, when I went into close the accounts they gave me quite a hard sell about their probate services and I all I could say was "you have to be joking". At least when I call my solicitor I can get her on the phone, which is more than you can say about ...... (whose 0845 number doen't give you an option to press if you don't have an account with them) :mad:



    Jennifer I have edited the name out. I know that we have had this debate before about whether names ould be included - unfortunately cant remember what the reply was! Will refer it to Brucie and if necessary re-edit. Hope you dont mind. Helen
     
  2. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,578
    Kent
    Gosh Jennifer, this bank has a lovely `user friendly` commercial on UK TV, you do surprise me. ;)
     
  3. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    3,453
    Jennifer, can you not reply that such and such a branch holds a certified copy of the death certificate and get them to chase it up.
    We had a letter of sympathy from the bank, mum's name was completely mis-spelt!! We have made an official complaint.
    Love Helen
     
  4. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,439
    #4 jenniferpa, Aug 18, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2007
    Yes I generally have not indicated this bank's name in previous discussions about how appalling they are. However, I think in this situation I am justified. After all, if it's acceptable to offer personal recommendations (which is think it was established that it was) surely the reverse should be true. Also, surely factual reports should be allowed: "the world's local bank"'s telephone system does NOT have an option for a non-account holder - one wonders how they get any new business.

    I'm calling them on monday to ask them to check their records. Pecullarly, this request came from Germany (?!?). To be fair a well-known building society with religious connections did essentially the same thing, but they didn't ask for the same information, just more.
     
  5. Kayla

    Kayla Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    621
    Kent
    My Mum had accounts at two well known Building Societies and I went into both of them, the day after she died, to register her death. The first one conducted an interview and form filling in a proper interview room. Al the paperwork was effeciently sorted out by e-mail, telephone or post.
    The second Building Society had a long queue of people and I was kept standing up, while I talked about my mother's death, with people standing all around. We heard nothing from them, despite e-mailing, telephoning and writing to them. They were hopeless, rude and ineffecient. My husband has lodged a formal complaint with them.
    I can't see why people on Talking Point couldn't send an PM to somebody official about good or bad services received, and then the information passed on to anyone who asks on an individual basis. It would be a great help.
    I don't think it is right that financial institutions deal with bereaved people insensitively and get away with it. They are probably trying to make things seem complicated, so people are persuaded to use their financial services. A lot of people have complained about Banks and Building societies on TP.
    I hope Jennifer can get things sorted out quickly from America.
    We are going to Probate at the end of next week.
    Kayla
     
  6. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,578
    Kent
    I had some problems with a well known building society years ago.

    I wrote a letter of complaint to the head office and the next thing I knew, there was a knock at the door and we received a personal visit from the Area Manager.

    He promised the behaviour of the Branch officers was out of order, and I realized it was not company policy to behave as they did, but their individual interpretation of the rules.

    I received a humble apology and the counter staff who acted so high handedly were reprimanded.
     
  7. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,439
    To be honest I have found the staff (as opposed to the procedures) at the "bank with no name" to be as helpful as they possibly can be: unfortunately I have also seen one staff member reduced to tears over her inability to make the system work (not on the account closing - previously). As bad as it is dealing with them intermittently, I can't even begin to imagine how soul-destoying it must be to do it on a daily basis. It's also the only company I have ever come across in which one part of the company (tech support) has refused point blank to speak to another part of the company (internet support). That poor chap was almost (but not quite) speechless. Mind boggling really.
     
  8. blue sea

    blue sea Registered User

    Aug 24, 2005
    270
    England
    Jennifer, I had exactly the same sort of experience after dad died with 'the world's local bank'. An individual at my dad's branch finally sorted it all out for me and was so compassionate, apologetic and competent that my anger subsided. However I still made a formal complaint (which resulted in a standard, bland letter of apology). Even getting the direct phone number for the branch required me to employ tactics worthy of MI5.
    Blue sea
     
  9. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,439
    You FOUND the number for your local branch???? My hat's off to you: that's something I've never been able to do.:)

    Jennifer
     
  10. Kayla

    Kayla Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    621
    Kent
    We are going to Probate on Thursday and my husband had such a hard job filling in all the forms, especially the ones for the Inheritance Tax. It is all so complicated and one form needs to be done, before anther one can be filled in. He had to keep downloading more and more forms from the tax office website.
    I'm sure all this red tape isn't really necessary. How do other people cope with the Probate and IT forms? Are we the only people to have found them confusing and complicated?
    Each year I have to complete Self Assessment Tax forms for my Self-Employment and these forms are simple and straightforward to fill in. Surely the tax people could make the IT forms just as easy if they wanted to and it would make life a lot easier for everyone.
    Kayla
     
  11. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,439
    I'm afraid I've copped out: employed a solicitor to do the paper work. It goes against the grain to pay someone else to do something that I (possibly) could do myself, but being in a different country made it just too hard. To revert to my original issue - I have discovered that the telephone number that was on my letter from the bank is in fact incorrect! I resorted to trying different combinations of the number until I got through to their probate division. It turns out although some of the forms they have received from the branch, 2 of the forms the branch doesn't have in their possesion to give out (why not I wonder). Hey ho.

    Jennifer
     
  12. Kayla

    Kayla Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    621
    Kent
    We made a formal complaint about one of Mum's Building Societies, which had taken so long to complete the paperwork for Probate and they said they would investigate the local branch. This morning we received a cheque for £25, as compensation for any inconvenience caused by their delays.
    It just shows that it is worth complaining, when things are not dealt with properly and perhaps in future, they will be as effecient as Mum's other Building Society were, after she died.
    Kayla
     
  13. Kayla

    Kayla Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    621
    Kent
    This morning we received a second cheque for £25, from a different section of the same Building Society as yesterday.
    It is definitely worth making a complaint if it is justified and it might also help someone else, as they might tighten up their procedures in the future.
    Kayla
     
  14. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,439
    Just a slight moan: yesterday I got a letter forwarded by my solicitor from the holders of the contents policy for my mother's flat, indicating various requirements that needed to be fulfilled in order for the policy to remain in force now that my mother has died. Fair enough, but the only reason they KNOW that she has died is because I called them, and followed up with a letter, telling them to cancel the policy! They obviously got the letter (otherwise they wouldn't have had the solicitors address) so why on earth didn't they read it? Grumble, grumble.
     
  15. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,439
    Ha. And now the same company has sent a refund. Sigh.
     
  16. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,578
    Kent
    It must have been from a different department. :rolleyes:
     

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