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Can Lloyds or any bank ask this?

70 replies

FoofffyShmoofffer · 26/04/2011 11:26

Well they can ask but do we have to answer?
What difference does it make?

When my Dad died he left a policy that he had secretly set up split 3 ways between me, mum and sis.
Think it came to about seven thousand.
When I went to bank the cheque I was asked by the cashier how we had acquired this money. I had to stand there 6 weeks after my dads death in a crowded bank and tell her. I presumed it was because we were living off benefits at the time and it was alot of money but I damn well didnt like it.

Two days ago DH went to the bank with a cheque for two thousand signed by my mum.
He was asked by the cashier where it was from and what connection was this person to us. I was bloody annoyed. How is their business?
We aren't on benefits anymore so it can't be that. It just feels so damned intrusive.
Does anyone know why they do it? and do all banks do this?

OP posts:

FabbyChic · 26/04/2011 11:27

Yes they are legally entitled to ask how you got it in case you are evading tax.


FabbyChic · 26/04/2011 11:28

It is also part of the EC Money Laundering Laws. It is a requirement that banks ask.

Not their fault contact the EC.


BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack · 26/04/2011 11:29

It's to do with money laundering I believe...I think anything over £1,000 and they will ask.........

I withdrew some money from DS account and she wanted to know why and what we were going to do with it....when I pay my French mortgage every month I have to tell them what I am making the payment for and where did the money come from.

I can imagine it is destressing in your case but it's normal for them to ask xx


FoofffyShmoofffer · 26/04/2011 11:29

But we could be lying through our teeth!!
(we aren't but it's hardly an infallible system if that's the case)

OP posts:

dawntigga · 26/04/2011 11:29

It's part of the banks ensuring the funds are obtained legally - better to be asked imo than have any old person going in with a cheque and getting funds, unless you like the idea of no security or crime being able to wash funds easily.



Chil1234 · 26/04/2011 11:29

They ask not so much because of tax evasion but because of money-laundering. If you don't normally bank big cheques they'll ask the question as a security measure.


Groovee · 26/04/2011 11:30

No idea, but I had to cash a cheque from the sale of our house and then write another one to pay the money into the new mortgage and the bank were pains in the rears wanting me to put it in a high interest account when all I was trying to do was cash it so I could then pass it on to where I wanted it to go. Then started on at me about opening a bank account about for the baby! Through gritted teeth I told the bloke I'd opened on the day I'd registered her and if he looked at the account he would see the SO into her account.

I think there are just checking it's not fraud. I believe there was a case where a woman cashed cheques from her employer which she had stolen.


manfromCUK · 26/04/2011 11:32

What a totally pathetic society we have become - where perfectly law abiding people are asked such ridiculous and intrusive questions. Does anyone seriously think that this in any way addresses problems of money laundering? Pathetic - I wonder what they would do if you declined to answer? I am willing to bet that this works in the same way as airport security in which they target people who are plainly low risk but "compliant" so they don't have to ask the difficult cases.


littleducks · 26/04/2011 11:35

I bank with barclays, they havent ever asked me.....does seem to be a crap system, if you pay the cheques in at the machine who would ask?


minibmw2010 · 26/04/2011 11:40

I guess each bank has its own methods, but it seems a bit intrusive. I banked £3.5K cash the other day (from the sale of my beloved car) and they didn't bat an eyelid (Santander), certainly didn't ask me any questions.


oldraver · 26/04/2011 11:40

They ask over a certain amount, I thought it was over £7,000, though I put a cheque for a bit over that into my account 18 months ago and they didnt ask at all


GloriaSmut · 26/04/2011 11:40

How very odd. I paid a slightly larger sum into my (Co-operative) bank account without any grief at all. They did ask if I'd like it to go straight into my savings account - not right then was the answer, I'll transfer some later - but I didn't take offence at the suggestion since it made commonsense. So no, I wouldn't say this sort of interrogation is standard practice at all banks.


Bigleaf · 26/04/2011 11:41

It's a crap system, but it's the fault of a poor regulatory framework aimed at ticking boxes rather than actually addressing the problems of financial crime. By asking, and receiving a plausible explanation, Lloyds have discharged their requirement to the FSA. If they didn't ask, and you were a money launderer, then they could be liable.


Chil1234 · 26/04/2011 11:41's not 'pathetic' any more than it's 100% effective against money-laundering. It's a simple, first-step security measure and if the person declines to answer the question then, presumably, they won't accept the cheque.


zukiecat · 26/04/2011 11:41

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Crawling · 26/04/2011 11:41

Well DP took £2000 cash into Lloyds bank last month and we were shocked that we were asked no questions at all, so it cant be policy must of been a nosy cashier.


BooyHoo · 26/04/2011 11:42

yes, anything over £5000 in my last job we had to ask where the money had come from and record the answer on teh back of the cheque. if it had been a business customer who was always lodging large amounts we wouldn't ask but for a personal customer we would especially if the only money they usually get in is a smaller amount like a benefit payment. £7000 would be an unusual transaction on your account.

and just to make you feel a bit better, my sister got stung by a money laundering scam, thinking she was getting paid in advance for a job. thankfully the cashier at her bank asked this question and raised the alarm when my sister told her where the money had come from. my sister could have been out alot of money if the cashier hadn't done her job.


wolfhound · 26/04/2011 11:43

I got questioned recently when a savings bond I had matured. I asked for it to be repaid rather than reinvested for another 5 years. The chap said 'What are you going to do with it?' I said 'Spend it.' He laughed. It did feel none of his business, frankly. But I assume he was following a script.


FoofffyShmoofffer · 26/04/2011 11:44

I was annoyed at DH initially for so willingly answering.
However, looking at some of these answers refusal might have made him look suss!

It is a fairly crap system though.

"Well as a matter of fact I am currently part of a money laundering venture" Hmm

OP posts:

LtEveDallas · 26/04/2011 11:46

Maybe not all banks do this? I only say that because I have, in the past, paid in a cheque for upwards of 50K, transferred twice that into a bond and written two cheques of more than 30K and have never been asked where the money came from / was going to etc.

In fact on Sunday I did a direct cash transfer for 10K to someone I had never paid before and there were no security questions then. You'd think online banking would be even more stringent wouldnt you?

If I had been asked I'm afraid I'd be tempted to reply "my sugar daddy is paying me a bonus for the extra special sex last night" just to see the teller's face Grin


ratspeaker · 26/04/2011 11:47

Yes I've been asked several times where I got cash or cheques from and sometimes not.
Got asked why I was banking an insurance cheque but not cash a few days later, think it depends on the cashier, one knew I was executor for my mum's estate
When we opened or ISAs several years ago we didn't know the person and were asked in detail where the money had come from, even though we'd banked with TSB for years

The worst bit was when my daughter tried to go from a childrens account to an adult one and couldn't provide utility bill, rent aggreement, ( student living at home) to move accounts within same bank!


BooyHoo · 26/04/2011 11:48

btw, i totally agree that it is a shit system for dealing with money laundering.


melonian · 26/04/2011 11:48

Wow what a brilliant security measure! Only a criminal mastermind would be able to get out of that one. Hmm


FoofffyShmoofffer · 26/04/2011 11:50

Oh well fair enough.

I am perfectly willing to wind my neck in. You live and learn eh?

Having spent 10 years not knowing what a cheque for anything over £30 looked like it was somewhat of a shock.

OP posts:

Bigleaf · 26/04/2011 11:51

Ok- the questions about putting in cheques are totally different to ones about moving money between your own accounts/ having bonds repaid.

Money laundering is when criminal proceeds are put through numerous transactions that make the money hard to trace - then it comes out "clean" (hence the term). So (e.g.) I rob a bank. I cant put the money in the bank, and I cant do anything with a large sum of cash without making it look suspicious. Maybe I could buy (eg) a few cars for cash, and then sell them again and ask for cheques as payment. I ask for these to be made to various acquaintances, which they then cash, and then pay the money back to me at an agreed date, in return for a cut.

Money launderers do use numerous individuals to do this work, so it's not totally crazy that Jo Bloggs is involved in money laundering, especially if this amount, paid into his account, is a large sum for that individual.

If they can get one "mule" and follow that money, it can lead them higher up the chain.

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