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Consumer Rights.

Updated: 4 Mar 2021

How to complain if you've been mis-sold a packaged bank account

If you think you've been mis-sold your packaged bank account, find out how to claim back your fees from your bank or building society.
Which?Editorial team

1 Can I make a claim?

If you currently pay or have paid a monthly fee for your bank account, it's likely you've had a packaged account.

These souped-up current accounts are now the most complained about financial product after Payment Protection Insurance (PPI).

Most banks sell packaged bank accounts on a non-advised basis which means they don't have to assess whether an account meets your specific needs.

But they must still provide clear, fair and unambiguous information so you can make an informed decision. Mis-selling occurs when a bank fails to do this.

If your bank account has benefits that you're likely to use, you could actually save yourself money, so make sure you have the best account for you

But just because some of the account benefits may be unappealing or have gone unused doesn't automatically mean mis-selling has taken place. 

As long as the bank gave you clear information about the account features and any significant exclusions, it was up to you to decide whether paying a fee for the account was worthwhile.

Even if you haven't been mis-sold your packaged account, you should be able to change your mind and revert back to a standard account if you're not using the benefits associated with your packaged account.


Examples of packaged account mis-selling

Some people have however, been mis-sold these accounts. Examples of how you might have been mis-sold include:

  • You were signed up without being told.
  • You weren’t told you could have a free bank account instead.
  • You were told having one would improve your credit score.
  • You were told you would get ‘unbeatable’ deals on other financial products or services by taking out this account but found you could get them cheaper as a new customer.
  • You were told you had to get a packaged account in order to access other products such as a loan or mortgage.
  • You were signed up to an account and your bank knew you wouldn't be eligible to claim on one or more of the benefits - eg you were too old to be able to use the travel insurance.
  • Your bank or building society failed to tell you that you were no longer eligible for one or more of the benefits - eg you had passed the maximum age limit to claim on the travel insurance

If any of these apply to you and you took out a packaged account as a result, head to Step 2 below for what to do next.

2 Speak to your bank

Mis-sold packaged bank account complaint

If you think you’ve been mis-sold a packaged bank account, we can help you make a complaint.

Start your complaint

If you think you've been mis-sold your packaged bank account, give your bank a chance to put things right first. 

Remember to tell your bank how you want it to resolve your problem. You might want the fees you paid to be refunded or you might want to switch back to a standard account.

You can make your initial complaint by letter or email so you have a copy of the correspondence from the beginning of your complaint.

If you can, include copies of your bank statements showing all the monthly fees you've paid. 

It's important to give the bank as much detail as possible when making your complaint and explaining why you think you were mis-sold the account. 

Floods of generic complaints submitted by third party claims management companies have been rejected for failing to provide enough detail.

3 Contact the ombudsman

If you’re not happy with the answer you get from your bank, or it doesn't reply to you within eight weeks, you can take your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).

Making a complaint to the FOS is free and you can do it yourself. Find out more about when you can take your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman.