I recently ordered the transfer of 1000 Euros from my bank account in Israel to my bank account in Germany.

After a while, when the money didn't arrive, I realized that I made a very silly mistake: under the beneficiary name, I wrote "My German Account" instead of writing my name. The rest of the details were correct (the IBAN was correct).

I went to my German bank to inform them of the mistake, but they said that they didn't receive any funds at all.

Another week or so passed, and 900 Euros were returned to my account in Israel. I was told that the transfer was rejected by the German bank due to my error, and that a 100 Euros fee has been deducted by the German bank.

100 Euros seems like a lot. Can I perhaps appeal/file a complaint with my German bank? What are the chances that they will return (some of) the 100 Euros?

  • 2
    Have you looked at the terms of the accounts? There's usually a schedule of fees for different things. Most banks these days charge very large fees for mistakes and problems, to offset the fact that they aren't making money off regular charges. May 4, 2022 at 13:07
  • 1
    There is this answer to a related question: Nowadays, the field is irrelevant for processing the transfer and completely ignored by the banks. This is what I had expected. Maybe there was another error. May 4, 2022 at 20:36
  • IBANs have nothing to do with wire transfers. Within Europe, everything works free and safe with normal (IBAN) bank transfers, so most Europeans don't even realize there's a whole other type of money transfer outside the IBAN universe; expensive, slow, manually processed, and error prone, called Wire Transfer.
    – Aganju
    May 5, 2022 at 7:01
  • Thank you all for the interesting comments. I will try to get some clarifications from my German bank and update accordingly.
    – user116990
    May 5, 2022 at 8:16
  • 1
    @Aganju AFAIK, an IBAN is an identifier, which does not actually specify how to send a transfer, just where to send it. I can know google.com exists but I still can't get there without Internet service.
    – user253751
    May 5, 2022 at 16:47

1 Answer 1


Of course, you can always file a complaint at the bank's customer complaint department (Reklamation). If you're not satisfied with the outcome, you can complain to the ombudsman.

In you're case complaining will be a bit easier since you're sender and receiver of the payment. As well as customer of the receiving bank, of course. It would be harder if you'd only be the sender.

In general one has to distinguish between SEPA and SWIFT transfers (those are all wire transfers). AFAIR in SEPA transfers the recipient's name is not guaranteed to be validated, but the bank only has to respect the IBAN to find a matching account.

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