3

I sell things online. Recently my bank has flagged some of the money I received in return for goods as being fraudulent - that the sender hadn't intended to send it (they call this an 'unauthorised payment'). They've taken the money from me, and I can't get the goods I sold back. They also closed both my business account and personal account without warning.

I can understand the account closure, although warning would have been nice. What I can't understand is why I am losing quite a significant amount of money for someone else's mistakes. Either the sender is fraudulently claiming this was unauthorised, or their bank doesn't have adequate security standards - why is it me who loses out here? Additionally my understanding is that a Faster Payment is as good as cash once received.

Can the bank legally take money from me that was received via Faster Payments?

  • You need to contact the bank to get why the amount deposited was revoked. They also closed both my business account and personal account without warning This isn't done unless the accounts are used for illegal activities and the bank has confirmed so. So I am assuming fraudulent activities are being done by yourself or somebody else using your account. Faster Payment isn't the issue here. The bank can revoke the deposit if the sending bank raises red flags and disputes the transactions. financial-ombudsman.org.uk/publications/ombudsman-news/48/… – DumbCoder Sep 12 '16 at 12:36
  • I'd owned that account for almost six years, and not once used it for anything illegal. I even provided the bank with proof that I had dispatched the goods. The account was closed without warning a day before my rent was due, meaning I had to borrow money from family! Reading that page it certainly seems I'm due some kind of compensation. – goldfinch Sep 12 '16 at 13:00
  • 2
    Every single online payment facilitator I've seen places the burden of the operational risk on the seller. In their point of view, the one putting money into the system is the buyer. The biggest one of them (begins with a P) is quite slippery. Just google for some woes sellers have gone through. Link what I believe to be the "poster child" of such woes. – Mindwin Sep 12 '16 at 16:02
  • I read somewhere, not too long ago, that UK banks are NOT allowed to disclose their reasons for their actions to the account holder if they become convinced there was fraud. The reason being that they shouldn't tip off the account holder that someone is on to them given that other resources are being brought in to investigate / pursue them. HOWEVER, this is nuts in the case of someone who has done nothing wrong as there is no way to correct mistakes. FWIW, I have no ref to such a policy, but it's crazy if it is actually true. – davmp Sep 13 '16 at 23:35
3

Additionally my understanding is that a Faster Payment is as good as cash once received.

Yes it is but there is a caveat. Read on unauthorized payments on Faster Payments website.

Either the sender is fraudulently claiming this was unauthorised, or their bank doesn't have adequate security standards - why is it me who loses out here?

Agreed. You should take this up [dispute the action] with your bank asking why your account was closed as there is no fraud from your side. Make sure you do all the follow-up with writing and provide evidence of the trade being genuine.

  • I did look at the Faster Payments documentation. They mention lots of things about protecting buyers from fraud, but nothing about what happens to the seller. Thanks for the info. – goldfinch Sep 12 '16 at 13:17

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.