Frequently, life is both interesting and challenging (in equal measure) as Heir Hunters, but sometimes we are presented with really unexpected challenges. Like Natwest…. In the case of two of the recent estates which FWL have administered, the funds have been held by Natwest. There is no ‘usual way’ of dealing with banks/building societies etc. but more often than not, they simply require a letter from the Treasury Solicitor accepting the claim made and informing them of the name of the administrator, i.e. us! Not so with Natwest, it would appear. Without going into the minutiae of the last FOUR weeks, their policy was that the only person who could sign to close a deceased person’s account/s was their next-of-kin. Well, not if the next-of-kin specifically appoints someone else to act on their behalf!
No less than eight different members of staff and three weeks of battles, finally the ‘legal department’ realised that there needed to be a Plan B in their policy – why oh why did it take so long? Why did it require so much persistence from this customer to get the right result? And, can you imagine how long it took to scrape me off the ceiling when one member of staff said ‘I’ll come back to you again after I’ve spoken to the legal department but I can’t guarantee you’ll get the answer you want‘!!!! It’s not what I want, it’s the law!
Today, we finally have the funds from one of the two estates in the bank and we are promised the other finances tomorrow. Hurrah! Let’s put the flags out and hope that either no more cases ever have funds in Natwest or that this has paved the way to an easier process of claiming deceased estates from them in the future …. [not holding my breath there!]
Persistence pays off, though probably also increases the telephone bill.