Friday, 12 October 2012
19.6.2012 To HSBC With reference to your letter dated 12.6.2012; You inform me that my account is being micro-managed. As such I am sure that you are aware that I am in receipt of state benefits as my only source of income. In accordance with the Social Security Administration Act 1992; “Certain benefit to be inalienable. 187.—(1) Subject to the provision of this Act, every assignment of or charge on– (a) benefit as defined in section 122 of the Social Security Administration Act 1992; [3(a) a jobseeker’s allowance;] (b) any income-related benefit; or (c) child benefit, and every agreement to assign or charge such benefit shall be void;” This is an Act of Parliament which over-rides banks taking charges from an account of people who are in receipt of any of the following benefits; • Income Support • Tax Credits • Child Benefit • Job seekers allowance • Incapacity benefit • Disability living allowance •Attendance Allowance • CSA payments • Other DWP payments. These social security benefits are granted to stop hardship and are designed to meet basic day to day needs, and are exempt from arrestment in terms of section 187 of the Social Security Administration Act 1992. Section 45 of the Tax Credits Act 2002 Chapter 21 part 1 is an identical provision to the said section 187 of the 1992 Act. This stipulates that the banks can not apply any charges to money received as benefit, and any such charges are unlawful and therefore disallowed. Therefore I request that you waive all fees currently pending at this time. In light of the above Act I do not expect for any charges to be applied to my account in the future. Furthermore, as my financial difficulties do stem from charges made to my account by the bank during the past few years, I request a hardcopy of all transactions since the account was opened and immediate reimbursement of all bank charges that have been levied. Failure to act in accordance with the governing policies will of course result in my taking the matter to Law. Your presumed response of citing small print involved with contractual obligation will be dealt with by my reminding you that such terms & conditions are unlawful and are therefore voided by the above mentioned statutes, as clearly stated. Thank you for your help in this matter. A reply arrived today dated 27.6.12. Halfway down page 2 after a lot of waffle it says; "I note your comments in which you advise that the only source of income into the account is derived from state benefits paid to yourself. If my understanding of the position is correct you allege that the bank is unlawfully deducting charges from your account when you are in receipt of benefits, when the government has implied that this is the minimum amount of income required to live on. Please be assured that we have investigated this matter and we can confirm that we are acting within section 187 of the Social Services Administration Act 1992. Full details of this act can be found on www.hmrc.gov.uk" 28.10.2012 ADDITIONAL According to this website: http://forums.digitalspy.co.uk/showthread.php?t=1497117; Jason JAG Law: "Taken from another website: Read the Government’s response The purpose of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 Section 187 and section 45 of the Tax Credits Act 2002 is to prevent people’s benefit money being at risk by it being assigned over to a third party in settlement of a debt. It is not intended to prohibit the application of bank charges. Bank charges are in the nature of an expense, and are incurred by the holder of the account; tax credits and benefits are payable in order to help customers meet their expenses, and as such it is legitimate for banks to deduct charges from the balance of an account held in that bank, whether the money paid into the account comes from tax credits, benefits or other sources, such as earnings." Smokeychan1: "LOL what do they think bank charges are then? Are they not a debt???" soapfan_1973: "Yes, but not a debt owed to a "third party."