IMPORTANT - Money Saving Expert by wuzhenguang



This is a template letter for guidance. You need to add your
details and where appropriate change the letter to suit your
particular circumstances.

Once you’ve made changes, always print it out and read
through to check it makes sense to the recipient.

                      HOW IT WORKS:

 [BLUE BRACKETS]: Put your specific info here, then delete
       the instructions (and change the text colour)

 [RED BRACKETS]: Just for info, after you’ve read ENSURE
                   YOU DELETE

  Please remember it is VERY IMPORTANT you make this
section as personal as possible to give a better chance of your
                claim not being turned down.

 Now delete this page so your letter starts from the name and
                   address section below
                                                                            [insert your name
                                                                            and address]

                                                                            [insert date]

[insert name and
address of bank]

Dear Sir or Madam,

Account number: [insert the number of the bank account you are writing to reclaim from]

I am writing with regards to the claim I have on hold in my county court (reference [enter your to
county court claim number]) for the refund of unauthorised bank charges. I would like to give you
the opportunity to settle my claim before I approach the court asking for my particulars to be updated.

For your information my updated claim will be based on the following points:


I believe the fact that I have been incurring bank charges goes contrary to the aims of the Lending
Code (Section 9) and Banking Conduct of Business Sourcebook (section 5.1.4 ‘in particular, a firm
should deal fairly with a banking customer whom it has reason to believe is in financial difficulty’), and
previously were contrary to the Banking Code. My personal situation has been affected by the
charges leaving me in financial hardship in the following ways:

[Now you need to tell your own story... we can’t write this for you

Explain why you think charges were unfair in your own words (see examples in the guide). You
should try and include examples which demonstrate as many of the following points as are relevant.

       Can’t pay for necessities. You’re struggling to meet basic necessities eg mortgage, council
        tax, food, utility bills
       Can’t pay debts. You’re struggling to make loan and credit card repayments
       Income eaten by charges. Your income’s being eaten up by repaying charges (eg you’re
        being asked to pay £50 of charges from a £100 weekly benefit income)
       Payments regularly returned. Your payments regularly get returned unpaid as you’ve not
        enough money in your account
       Substantial drop in income. For example, you’ve lost your job, started a lower paid job,
        needed to take parental or carers leave, your partner has died, you’ve separated from your
        partner, you’ve started full time education or you/your partner has been/gone to prison
       Disability or illness. You’ve needed to increase spending on something due to a disability or
        serious illness
       Going bankrupt or into debt management. You’re going bankrupt, getting an IVA or Debt
        Relief Order or are in a debt management plan
       Living off credit. You’re living off credit and regularly need to increase your credit limit
       Regular credit card cash withdrawals. You are using regular cash withdrawals from credit
        cards to make ends meet
       Frequently over overdraft limit. You frequently go over your overdraft limit. In earlier
        incarnations of hardship rules this was explained as having more than £500 of charges a year
        – so that seems a good benchmark
        Bank charges have hurt your situation. The charges have contributed to making your
        financial hardship situation materially worse

       The charges are disproportionate. If you unintentionally slipped over your limit by a few
        pounds and the charge is a lot higher than the ‘offence’ eg you go £1 over but charged £35.
       You are / were stuck in a cycle of charges you cannot break out off. If you’ve had
        charges on charges, and were stuck in a trap of not being able to clear them before new daily
        or monthly fees are added on top.
        Delete these instructions when you’ve written your section]


The charges are unfair under s.140A(1) of the Consumer Credit Act 1974 and contrary to the
requirement of good faith, having caused a significant imbalance in our relationship and a detriment to
myself, and under regulation 5(1) of the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999, in the
following respects (save for, in the case of the later, those matters which relate to the level of the
charge as against the service supplied in exchange):

(1) The charges were (or had the potential to be) excessive and punitive in comparison with the costs
to the bank caused by my conduct which triggered the charges.

(2) The charges were set by reference to the overall cost to the bank of providing current accounts to
all of its customers which held such an account, rather than merely to the cost of my conduct thereby
effectively requiring me to subsidise the provision of current accounts by the bank to other customers.

(3) In the premises the bank did not deal fairly as between myself and its other customers.

(4) The existence and quantum of the charges were inadequately and/or insufficiently explained
and/or drawn to my attention either; when my account was first opened; when I gave an instruction
which would result in the levying of a charge; or otherwise before any particular charge was applied.

(5) The circumstances and manner in which the charges were levied created potential for the
application of multiple charges and the levying of charges to give rise to the application of further

(6) The complexity of the charges and/or the circumstances in which they were levied.

(7) The nature of the charges and/or the circumstances of their application was such as to cause me
inherent difficulties in predicting the incidence and amount of such charges in advance.

(8) The absence of any effective competition between providers of current accounts which restricted
my ability to chose a current account operated on terms which did not provide for charges such as
(and/or equivalent to) those levied by your bank.

(9) The charges were (or had the potential to be) excessive in comparison with the level of borrowing
which triggered the levying of the said charges.

In particular, and without prejudice, the burden of proof for the above rests on [enter name of your
bank] to prove that the circumstances of our relationship are fair (pursuant to s.140B(9) of the
Consumer Credit Act 1974), so you will need to provide evidence to the contrary in court.


As it is not within your interest for me to continue my case in court I would like you to reconsider my
complaint based on this information and ask that you refund me the amount I have previously
requested of £[enter amount you previously asked for] [delete this last part if not relevant]
which includes the interest the court would have awarded.

[Delete this sentence if do not want to ask for permission to amend your court claim] If you are
not willing to offer a settlement at this stage then instead I request the bank’s permission to amend my
Particulars of Claim, so that the matter of unfairness can be legally determined.

I look forward to a full response to this letter within 14 days but if you are not able to help please take
this as notice that I will be contacting my county court at the earliest opportunity.

Yours faithfully,
[insert your signature]

[insert your name (printed)]

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