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By Casey
Hi there,

I thought I give you an update as to the further restrictions put onto my Barclays bank account, as this also would be quite helpful, I guess, for anybody needing advice on this matter.

So, basically, you cannot do telephone, internet or mobile banking. You can also not get statements from the kiosk, which are at the bank branches, you cannot use the kiosk at all. What you can do is get money out of the cash point machine, you can pay with the card in shops and online, so at least this is something and in my opinion the most important functions. However, what is a bit tricky is to exactly know how much money you spend and on what as you cannot view your bank statements and the mini slips only give you the last 8 transactions and it is also not up to date.

I am very lucky that I have a very symphatetic advisor and I also told him when I opened the account that I was planning to go bankrupt hence the need for a basic cash account, he was quite cool about it.
(I saw somebody asking this question, whether to tell the advisor).

And again, I had all the functions when I opened my bank account which was approx 10 days before filing, everything worked and then after about 3 weeks into bankruptcy the above mentioned functions were stopped. It is a good idea to set up the standing orders and direct debits before you go bankrupt, I don't know how you would do it once you are restricting from most functions, I think you have to see the adviser as you cannot do telephone banking nor internet.

Well, perhaps the Co-op bank is a bit more easy?

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By Geraldine
Thanks for that Casey. It is really useful information for anyone reading the forum and considering bankruptcy. I certainly think that this must be a new policy from Barclays as I have not come across it before you first raised it. I have to say it seems absolutely crazy not to allow you to be able to do telephone banking. All I can think is that Barclays are doing this for a cost cutting exercise......

I have not come across anyone who has had the same issue with the Co-Op account so I think that one must still be OK as long as you open the account before you go bankrupt.

Interestingly I heard from someone today who has been told by their HSBC advisor that they will be able to keep their simple account open after they go bankrupt however I do not think this is correct. I am waiting to find out.
By Casey
Thanks, Geraldine, for your reply.

Yes, it seems really crazy with the telephone banking but much worse is that you canno print off your bank statements in the branch you are not allowed to use the machine!!!! It feels intimidating, to say the least, however my nice bank clerk has said that I can come in any time and he or his colleagues would print them off for me. Also, when I called the help desk when it all started they were really very kind of rude not telling me why I couldn't access my facilities any longer, and instead of telling me that it was due to me filing bankruptcy, the guy said you have to go to the cashier and give them a code they will then tell you the reason!!! how intimidating to go to the cashier and being told that because you are bankrupt, plus in my case a girl who is with me on my course works as a cashier at my Barclays branch and I was worried because I do not wish her to know....

Anyhow, it is as it is, I have never been a big friend of Barclarys but hey they together with the Co op are the only banks who give people like us a bank account. I think, the government should conintue to step up and urge other banks to do so too, they stil have and can work with our money, hey, but they cannot sell us any credit.

I have to mention that as well, when I was sitting at the desk of the adviser last week, there was a sign staring at me 'get a loan of £10,0000.00 today you pay only £199 per month, take the money with you TODAY! That is the trap I went into and I compare it to drug dealing, though it is not criminal, morally it is and should be stopped right now, it is luring vulnerable people into disaster.

In terms of the HSBC that is interesting, I would be happy to know should that be true as I still have got a Metro bank account, they have not written to me as yet, I have not checked, how would I know that it has been frozen? I take it that they would write to me and let me know? I have to say, that if they would allow me to keep the account open or say make it into a basic cash account, I would straight away change, Metro bank is the best bank there is in the UK and it certainly is very different from the other high stree bankds.
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By Hayden
Hi Casey

I would be interested to hear whether your Metro bank has remained open or not. Why not investigate? You could see if you can use your card or even make some enquiries in your branch (without mentioning bankruptcy of course). That would be very interesting information
By Casey
Hi Hayden,

I checked and it is still open and running!!!!

I even have still 15 pounds on it and I did not know about it. What do you suggest I do? The letter from Barclays came on 20 September so I guess the Metro bank either doesn t know or doesn t care? I have to mention that I never had any debts with Metro b when I opened the account beginning of this year I declined the offer of an over draft for obvious reasons and I have never had a minus on this account.

Look forward to hearing your opinion.
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By Hayden
Hi there Casey

That is very interesting. I know you are on a tight budget so the first thing I would do is draw out £10. Leave £5 in the account so that it cannot be closed by the bank for having zero funds..... This way if anything does happen you protect that £10 at least :)

Then I would give your OR a call. Just mention that you have noticed that your Metro bank has remained open with no borrowing facilities and ask as far as they are concerned whether there is any issue if you continue to use the account. Normally the OR does not care as long as there is no borrowing. In fact it is normally the bank itself that is the problem.

As such speak to the OR. If they are happy then the next step is to approach Metro. But lets take one step at a time. I do have a good feeling that Metro will be helpful so fingers crossed on this one as this could help not only you but lost of other people as well.
By Casey
Hi Hayden

thank you for the advice I have taken the 10 pounds from my bank account :D

I am still thinking, yes, that would be the route to go down if I wanted to use the Metro account, but I might not touch it and leave it as it is until I am discharged and then i would have a decent bank account again, because I guess it is not easy to get one after you are discharged? I shall wait another month or so, because there might still be a letter from Metro bank, they may be a bit slow. Also, not too sure whether they would allow me to keep the account open as otherwise wouldn't that be public that they allow bankrupt people to keep a basic account without credit?

Many thanks for all your good work.

By Melissa S
Hi there Casey

Did you speak to your OR about the account? It is probably best to do this even though you are not using it just to make sure they are in the loop and don't discover it at another time.

Like hayden I would also be interested to know how Metro feel about you keeping the account open. As long as there is no borrowing on the account.

It would be difficult to open a standard account for a while after bankruptcy so this account maybe a bit of a blessing for you and would be useful for other people too if metro are ok with this.
By Casey
Hi there,

No I have not spoken to the OR yet, because the account was clearly listed in my form also with dates when I opened it and closed it so I guess it is their decision whether they contact the bank. I shall wait a little and then decide what to do.

I shall definitely keep you updated.

Best wishes, Casey
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By Hayden
That is true Casey. If the Metro Bank account was included on your bankruptcy forms then the OR will already be aware of it. Normally they would have written to all the banks you highlighted and confirmed your bankruptcy. However if there was no outstanding balance and no significant credit then the OR would not be interested. It would then be down to the bank to decide what to do with the account. If it is still open this leads me to suspect that Metro are fine with it.

I will be very interested to hear what finally happens to this account :)