Monday, December 08, 2008

Halifax carry on regardless

Do HBOS (or indeed all the banks) know something the consumers don't?

Their response to the recent dispute and me saying that if the court decision went against them they'd have to pay back all the excess charges was a snotty letter from the BRANCH manager saying we don't want your accounts any more. That includes my ISA and web-based savings accounts.

Call me a conspiracy theorist if you like, but it seems to me that they may already know the outcome of the court decision and are taking the opportunity deliberately to rid themselves of any accounts that may cost them money in the future. I am not sure whether this would necessarily save them from having to repay though.

They didn't notice that I have my house insurance with them. So I presume they don't want that business either, or the application for life cover which I received a few days ago and was going to take in this week.

I have replied to the letter, asking them to re-consider their move to close my accounts. I was after all extremely depressed on that day, and the lousy customer service I received from the CUSTOMER manager didn't help. From the moment I walked in the branch, she had no intention whatever of even listening to me. Not only that, but she had the sauce to criticise what I spent my money on, in the course of looking at my account details over the weekend that £175 of charges were applied for 5 separate transactions, one of them for only £5.

Apart from my reply to the Branch manager, a letter may also be sent to Head Office, naming the Customer Manager whose rudeness and intransigent attitude so annoyed and upset me. I will hold off sending this letter for a few days until I receive a reply from the Branch Manager, but I still think his junior needs some serious retraining in how to listen politely to customers and not pre-judge any situation until she has properly considered all the circumstances.

I noticed she was not on the front desk when I handed in my letter this morning. Hopefully she is somewhere in the back of the branch reading training manuals and suitably gagged with duct tape.

Whatever the outcome of the appeal, the banks and the Government are damned. Either the taxpayer (HBOS is already in receipt of 'rescue' funds) is going to have to partly foot the bill for paying back millions in excess overdraft charges or the banks will be seen to be allowed to flout the law on unfair contracts with the blessing of a Government-influenced judiciary.

Will keep you all posted.