Bank account conundrum

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  • #34349
    Anonymous
    Guest

    The names in this post are fictional.

    We’ve got a claimant who is claiming under LHA but can’t prove her identity.

    When she is born she has the surname “Brown”. When she is 9 she is adopted and her name changes to “Green”. 20 years later she flees domestic violence and, as her ex is trying to trace her, she changes her name by deed poll to “White”. Problem is she has lost the deed poll and can’t remember where the solicitor that helped her is.

    She has always been on benefits and pays for everything in cash. She has never had a passport or driving licence. Her mobile is pay-as-you-go.

    Somehow, even having a complete lack of ID, she manages to open a post office account. However as you may well know these accounts will not accept HB payments.

    All the banks here will not open a basic account as she cannot prove that she is who she says she is. However she does not fall into any of the vulnerable categories so we shouldn’t really think about paying the LL. However I can’t see any alternative.

    Any ideas? 😕

    #96479
    Anonymous
    Guest

    When you say she has “always been on benefits” do you mean she is getting either Income Support or JSA?

    #96480
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Andy, yes she has been on i/s for donkeys years.

    #96481
    Anonymous
    Guest

    So from the HB point of view ID is not a problem, but the banks presumably want something more than an IS notification letter? Does she not have utility bills in her name, even though she pays them in cash?

    #96482
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Regrettably no. I thought of utility bills but she pays them through a “key”. She seems to have absolutely nothing in her own name.

    Grrrr 😡

    #96483
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Well, if she genuinely cannot open an account I don’t see why you can’t use reg. 96(3A)(b)(i) to justify payment to the landlord … that is certainly the guidance given to staff where I am working at the moment.

    #96484
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Cheers Andy

    #96485
    Ozzies Mate
    Participant

    Is payment by cheque not an option? IS she in receipt of CTB so would have Ctax bill?

    Also we set up an agreement with the local banks that they would open accounts for LHA claimants solely for receipt of LHA payments (a’la post office a/c for DWP payments) & they agreed that as a last resort that our award notification letter would be sufficient. Might be worth checking if you’re authority came to a similar arrangement with their local branches

    #96486
    Anonymous
    Guest

    The problem with cheques is that, if the claimant does not have a bank account and the Authority does not offer an encashment service at their Cashiers (and many LAs don’t do this any more), then the claimant’s only option is to go to Cheques’R’Us or such and cough up 10% of the value of the cheque in commission … doesn’t really fit the requirement in the regs of a payment method convenient to the claimant.

    #96487
    Mikeb2
    Participant

    To open a basic Bank account normally requires the following:

    [quote:9cfd6920f0]Identification requirements
    When you apply to open an account, you will need to supply the bank with:

    One piece of evidence to confirm who you are.
    One piece of evidence to confirm where you live

    Who you are (1 piece of evidence required):

    Full passport
    European Union (EU) national ID card
    UK Photo card driving licence or UK full paper licence
    Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) benefit entitlement letter*
    Her Majesty’s Revenues and Customs (HMRC) letter with a National Insurance Card
    housing / council tax benefit letter*

    Where you live (1 piece of evidence required):

    Utility bill (gas, electricity, water, landline telephone)*
    Current year council tax bill
    DWP benefit entitlement letter*
    HMRC letter
    Television license
    housing / council tax benefit letter*

    *All evidence marked* must be less than 3 months old.[/quote:9cfd6920f0]

    #96488
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Is there a local Credit Union that could be used instead?

    #50448
    Anonymous
    Guest

    We don’t have a local credit union that I’m aware of.

    #50449
    5678
    Participant

    The banks should accept a letter from the DWP (within 3 months) at the current address together with a recent HB award letter.

    My experience is that clmts have to be pretty persistent with the banks as they don’t need much of an excuse to open a basic bank account.

    I have been providing clmts with a letter (if they have problems) stating that they are in receipt of HB and that their identity has been verified for HB purposes. With this and a DWP letter they have been able to open accounts.

    Kathy

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