Back at the start of this year, I initiated an £18,000 investment Isa transfer from Barclays Smart Investor to Fundsmith.
It is now August and the transfer has not been completed.
I have raised complaints with both Barclays and Fundsmith, but neither party seems to be taking the matter seriously nor making any real attempt to resolve it.
Passing the buck: Neither Fundsmith nor Barclays offered any meaningful help to the reader whose £18,000 nest egg they’d managed to lose
My Barclays Isa now shows a zero balance and it claims to have transferred the funds. However, Fundsmith says it has not received the payment.
The last time I spoke to Barclays, the customer services agent said they had a massive backlog of complaints to deal with.
I am an 83-year-old woman who has been trying to cope with a husband whose advancing dementia has led to hospitalisation.
Tony Hazell replies: This turned out to be such a simple issue that you really have to wonder what is going on with the customer services departments that could not get to the bottom of it.
Barclays says it received the documentation for the transfers on March 12 and sent a cheque on April 29.
Astonishing isn’t it that taking six weeks for a simple transfer is deemed acceptable? Are investment firms and banks still doing everything by paper and abacus?
Fundsmith then confirmed receipt on May 27 (so that’s another four weeks).
However, it still could not complete the transfer as the cheque was in the wrong name and there was some missing paperwork. You really couldn’t make this up could you?
Now, if you or I received a cheque with the wrong name on it, we might phone or send an email.
But Fundsmith wrote and Barclays says it didn’t get the letter.
Your transfer has finally been completed and Barclays has added £2,263.05 for lost investment growth on the Fundsmith fund rounding it up to £2,500 as a goodwill payment.
I asked Fundsmith to check the figures and they do agree with them. Fundsmith has also given you £350 compensation.
A spokesman says: ‘We wholeheartedly apologise to Mrs M for this very frustrating situation and for not ensuring that her transfer and subsequent complaint were dealt with properly.’
You have YOUR say
Every week Money Mail receives hundreds of your letters and emails about our stories. Here are some about the car park scammers targeting motorists:
Part of the problem is that car park operators have been replacing machines that take cash with those which will only accept cards. Soon there will be no machines taking cash.
P. Y., Bury St Edmunds.
Not everyone is bad. I remember parking one evening in the pouring rain. I could barely read the instructions on the meter, let alone follow them. But a kind stranger helped me work out what I had to do.
W. S., Southampton.
I always pay with my mobile through Google Pay nowadays. I’ve not used cash or a card for over a year. It means I don’t have to worry about my card getting swallowed or having to phone my bank if I lose it.
M. A., email.
Always trust your instincts with these kind of people. If someone looks suspicious, they probably are. Ask for an ID card to make sure they are genuine. If they decline then you’ll know not to trust them.
B. W., Cardiff.
Vodafone won’t refund my £1,000 pay as you go credit
I have built up an outstanding credit balance with Vodafone on pay as you go for £954.85.
It’s my fault for not checking my bank statement properly!
My grandson rang Vodafone on my behalf.
It confirmed my outstanding balance and cancelled the £40 monthly subscription which I do not recall either asking for or agreeing to.
The call centre said the refund would be in my bank account within seven to ten days.
Four months and six more phone calls later I am still waiting for the refund. On our penultimate call we were asked to take 26 sheets of bank statement printouts showing all the £40 monthly payments to our local branch.
That was on May 16 but I am still waiting.
Tony Hazell replies: Well, it took a little time for me to get a response from Vodafone and even then the company didn’t say very much.
So I really still have no idea why you were asked to take 26 pages of bank statements to a branch when Vodafone would have known from its systems that you were almost £1,000 in credit.
It’s almost as though someone was deliberately messing you around, wasn’t it? A spokesman says: ‘We apologise to Mr B for the delay in refunding his credit — we can now confirm we have processed a full refund, plus offered an additional sum for the inconvenience caused.’
Actually you are a woman, but this, too, seems to have escaped Vodafone.
Straight to the point
Argos is refusing to refund me for an uncomfortable office chair simply because I unpacked it. How are you supposed to know if it will be suitable if you can’t try it out first?
C. C., Fareham.
The retailer has contacted you to apologise and promised to reinstate the £60 worth of Nectar points that you used when you returned the chair.
In circumstances like this it says that staff should use discretion – which did not happen.
I had a very traumatic experience at Butlin’s, Minehead, in June when I got stuck on a waterslide.
But I had no problems when I visited the same holiday resort 35 years ago and was given a mat for the slide. Butlin’s has not admitted fault.
R. W., Solihull.
Butlin’s apologised and says mats are not required on this slide, as per the manufacturer’s recommendations.
More than 2,000 swimmers enjoyed the pool on the day you got stuck and Butlin’s says there were no other issues reported.
My daughter twice ordered a takeaway through Uber Eats after the first was cancelled.
It turned out that the kitchen was closed but two payments of £44.80 were still taken. One amount was refunded but then taken again when she booked an Uber taxi.
J. M., via email.
Uber Eats has apologised for your daughter’s poor experience and has now refunded the charges. It says it will ensure this doesn’t happen again.
Neo Energy took almost £209 from my account and the same amount in July. This is despite it stating that my monthly cost would be around £87.
R. W., Norwich.
Neo Energy says an incorrect direct debit was set up which has now been deleted. It has refunded you £155.44 plus a credit note of £40 as goodwill.
Post Office’s £290 Mastercard mix-up
Earlier this year I went to my local Post Office in Stirling, Scotland, to pay my 86-year-old mother’s Mastercard bill. I am her registered carer and have power of attorney to allow me to handle her affairs.
I handed over £290.04 in cash and the member of staff stamped the credit card receipt and told me it had gone through.
However Mastercard did not receive the money. I raised this with the Post Office but it told me it does not accept Mastercard payments and does not have my mother’s cash.
We now have to pay the bill again and the Post Office is saying the matter is now closed. Can you help?
E.P., via email.
Tony Hazell replies: The Post Office told me there was no evidence that the money was not returned.
It confirmed Mastercard payments are not accepted and suggested this was explained to you and the cash handed back. You strenuously deny this.
However as a gesture of goodwill it has now offered to give you the £290.04 that mysteriously disappeared, without it accepting any liability.
A spokesman for the Post Office says: ‘In line with our investigation into Mrs P’s complaint, we found no evidence to suggest that the cash was not returned to her in-branch, as there was no surplus in the end-of-day branch accounts.
However, in respect of Mrs P’s experience and as a goodwill gesture to resolve the matter fully, Post Office Ltd has provided Mrs P with a payout letter to the value of £290.04.’
It now considers this matter to be closed.
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