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Fisher1

Keeping an English bank account

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Hi everyone

It seems we may finally be getting ready to move, as we have an offer on our house.  I'm trying to get on with things that will need doing at some point anyway, until the survey is over and we are more or less sure the sale will go through.

So today's worry is about our English bank account. We want to keep it open, but have heard that some banks won't let you keep your account if you move abroad - so we are contemplating telling them we are going for six months and then just keeping quiet ... 

Any advice?   There are no loans or mortgages involved, we just want to keep the account open because there is a regular income paid in and we want to be able to move money in lump sums when the exchange rate is most favourable.


103 visa application lodged February 2013. 143 visa application submitted January 2016. Police checks and form 80 submitted February 29th 2016. Visa granted April 4th 2016.

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Do you have a relatibe's address that you can use?  If so, I would just do that and not tell them.  I still have a few Irish accounts open and use my parent's address.  I have everything pretty much set up online so post is minimal anyway.

Edited by Collie
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Keep it open, obviously get yourselves set up with on line banking etc and log in once a month to keep it active.

we had an account in uk but didn't have the on line set up etc, years later trying to access it was a pain but got it sorted eventually.

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56 minutes ago, Collie said:

Do you have a relatibe's address that you can use?  If so, I would just do that and not tell them.  I still have a few Irish accounts open and use my parent's address.  I have everything pretty much set up online so post is minimal anyway.

Not tell the bank I mean, obviously you ask the relatives if it is ok

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We kept a bank account with Barclays with their permission.  We changed the address to my mother in laws and also authorised her to make transactions on the account (including withdrawals) and it has worked well.  We've had people deposit Christmas/Birthday money etc in there (but spent the equivalent in $ here) and left the money in Barclays to use when we visit.

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I have a bank account with HSBC and have been able to change my address with them to Australia with no problems.  I've even had a new debit card sent over.  I did initially have my address as my mums address as I had moved in with her for a few weeks before moving here but once we had moved in to our own house I changed the address to our address here.

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Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self control to be understanding and forgiving.

Dale Carnegie – 1888-1955, Author and Lecturer

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7 minutes ago, NicF said:

I have a bank account with HSBC and have been able to change my address with them to Australia with no problems.  I've even had a new debit card sent over.  I did initially have my address as my mums address as I had moved in with her for a few weeks before moving here but once we had moved in to our own house I changed the address to our address here.

I think we're going to open a HSBC account before we move back.  The Barclays account is in OH's name which is fine if we go back together, but there is a chance that I'll need to go back with the kids before he does, and I'm not going back to a job so I don't know how easy it'll be to open a bank account once I'm there.  I though we might be able to open a HSBC account here and a UK one, and then transfer some money across that I can use to get sorted with the things I'll need for the kids and I once we are there.

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Check what your bank's policy is. If they don't allow accounts to remain open find a bank that does.

We checked with our bank and have had no issues with an Aus address once we moved. 

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I'd possible be wary about not telling the bank and continuing to use an account / access it via online banking as continually accessing online banking from an overseas IP address may raise a red flag.

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We have UK bank accounts, no problem at all registered to our Australian address. Cards are sent to Oz. The only thing to be aware of, think it's true, make sure that they remain active by paying in even small amounts. Think accounts get frozen if not used for a couple of years?

 

 

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Thanks everyone.   We lived outside the UK before and kept our UK account open no probs, but the banks in this country seem to have become totally neurotic about money laundering. i hadn't given it a thought as we are online and hardly ever go in the bank, but something I read the other day made me wonder if there would be problems ahead.  I think I'll ask them about it and see what reaction I get, and take it from there.  

 

thanks.


103 visa application lodged February 2013. 143 visa application submitted January 2016. Police checks and form 80 submitted February 29th 2016. Visa granted April 4th 2016.

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Talk to your bank, go in and speak to them.  If they will not allow you to keep the account and live away then move to a bank that will.  Sort this early.  

Using a proxy address could lead to future problems as banks are starting to request update information to ensure people are who they say they are.  That can mean proving your address.

It is a real problem now as I can't even switch accounts within the same bank I have been with for decades.  How can I be money laundering when they have had the money all along?  Rules are rules they say......computer says no!

 

 

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So many wineries ......so little time :yes:

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On a related note with regards to money laundering, does anyone happen to know what sort of proof of where our money has come from with regards to transferring it back to the UK when we move back?  There will be quite a substantial sum from the sale of our home and OH's business, which we will need to use in purchasing a house and business in the UK.  I will speak to a solicitor at some point about it, but wondered if anyone knew.  I'm guessing contract of sale and that sort of thing?

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50 minutes ago, LKC said:

On a related note with regards to money laundering, does anyone happen to know what sort of proof of where our money has come from with regards to transferring it back to the UK when we move back?  There will be quite a substantial sum from the sale of our home and OH's business, which we will need to use in purchasing a house and business in the UK.  I will speak to a solicitor at some point about it, but wondered if anyone knew.  I'm guessing contract of sale and that sort of thing?

we did a large transfer, they just wanted proof of sale, so we provided sale contract and completion details from house sale conveyance/solicitor and a bank statement to show the money was in our bank. All straight forward really.

I take it you are using a transfer company and not your bank?

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Enjoying life in Queensland

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5 hours ago, Keith and Linda said:

we did a large transfer, they just wanted proof of sale, so we provided sale contract and completion details from house sale conveyance/solicitor and a bank statement to show the money was in our bank. All straight forward really.

I take it you are using a transfer company and not your bank?

Thank you for the info, I'd assumed it'd be things like that.  Yes, we'll shop around for a good deal with a transfer company.  

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As a point of info for others in the same boat, I went round the banks today to ask their policy on keeping accounts open. 

Lloyds - no problem and willing to use overseas address for correspondence.

Santander - no problem, willing to use overseas address.

Marks & Spencer bank -  Would insist on closing account, because, weirdly, "you would not be able to manage your account."  I say 'wierdly' because this info was from someone on the end of a phone - there being no branch of Marks & Spencer's bank in my town. I have managed my account completely online and paperless since it was opened last Autumn?


103 visa application lodged February 2013. 143 visa application submitted January 2016. Police checks and form 80 submitted February 29th 2016. Visa granted April 4th 2016.

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21 hours ago, LKC said:

On a related note with regards to money laundering, does anyone happen to know what sort of proof of where our money has come from with regards to transferring it back to the UK when we move back?  There will be quite a substantial sum from the sale of our home and OH's business, which we will need to use in purchasing a house and business in the UK.  I will speak to a solicitor at some point about it, but wondered if anyone knew.  I'm guessing contract of sale and that sort of thing?

I transferred the money from my house sale and wasn't asked for anything other than ID. Thought it would be a huge hassle but it wasn't.  Worth going into your bank as well and asking what ratex they offer. They are surprisingly good when very large sums are involved.

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19 hours ago, ScottieGirl said:

I transferred the money from my house sale and wasn't asked for anything other than ID. Thought it would be a huge hassle but it wasn't.  Worth going into your bank as well and asking what ratex they offer. They are surprisingly good when very large sums are involved.

Yes I've been moving bits of money over for ages, just paying to westpac like a local bill ( had to set it up with them first) and I've found the rates very competitive.


103 visa application lodged February 2013. 143 visa application submitted January 2016. Police checks and form 80 submitted February 29th 2016. Visa granted April 4th 2016.

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On ‎6‎/‎06‎/‎2017 at 07:44, ScottieGirl said:

I transferred the money from my house sale and wasn't asked for anything other than ID. Thought it would be a huge hassle but it wasn't.  Worth going into your bank as well and asking what ratex they offer. They are surprisingly good when very large sums are involved.

I'm about to transfer money from house sale also. I have a UK HSBC account and have transferred small amounts in the past.

I went into my bank today and was told the only rate they would offer me was the published one, the young woman even gave me a slip with the exchange rate for $100 and said there'd be a fee of $32 on top of that. To think I'd made an appointment and waited an hour to get this advice.

What I really would like to know though is what is the process for proving that money is from a house sale and not money laundering? I don't want the money rejected or held in limbo especially because I'm using a third party and not my bank for the transfer.

 

 

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I didn't make an appointment just  went and asked the teller at the counter and they rang up their Forex dept to get a rate which was a couple of cents higher than the tourist rate. The money was transferred within 24 hrs. The bank took care of any financial regulations I didn't have to fill anything in. The bank have my tax file number on record. My bank is Westpac. 

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I didn't think I needed an appointment but it seems to be the new process at ANZ if you want to do anything other than telling transactions. That's ok but I didn't need an hour around Chadstone when I'm trying to get rid of stuff not buy more. I'll give it one more go tomorrow and try to get to Forex department myself.

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We kept our Royal Bank of Scotland account open when we moved to Australia and we were there 10 years. We had new cards sent to us when necessary and they were fine with an Australian address. We used to use it just for ease really when family wanted to give us or the children money for birthdays etc. Every so often we would either transfer the money to Australia or use it for online shopping.
Of course when we moved back in March we then already had an account set up with credit history!


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The RBS is giving us hassle about our account that we have had with them for over 40 years and 30 of them in Australia.  They want our Australian tax file numbers and certified copies of our passports. So far I haven't got round to it, but they are sending an endless stream of ratty letters.  I have declared this bank account on my Australian tax return some time ago, and they don't even want to know now as my balance in the RBS is beneath their reporting limit.

I am disinclined to go to the trouble the RBS want us to go to, as several years ago they lost  a large sum I was transferring to Aus.  Just dissapeared into thin air and they washed their hands of it. After a lot of detective work I discovered that their foreign dept had not filled the transfer form properly. I still have a copy. They just stopped in the middle of the transfer.  Even when I got the money about 7 months later they did not even give an apology.  After that I used a forex company to make transfers without trouble.

So I am inclined to tell the RBS to go and get ##**#  with their request.    It all originates in the USA, they are paranoid.

Apart from that there is no trouble about keeping your UK bank account open.  Many Australians open a UK bank account from here, if they are going for an extended holiday in the UK.

 

 

 

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My advice to people leaving the UK is always, hang on to your bank account.   You don't think of it at the time, but later you discover t's handy for all kinds of things if you still have relatives in the UK, and it's also good for holidays - you can put a lump sum in there and use it while you're in the UK instead of having to make international withdrawals all the time.

Besides, should you decide to go back, it's a %%^^&** nightmare opening a brand new UK bank account, especially if you've been away so long that you've lost your credit rating.  It used to be much easier, but the laws have tightened up.  When we went back in 2015, it took us several weeks to get our bank account fully set up (banks will "open" a new bank account for you on the day you walk into the bank, but they won't actually let you do any transactions until you've jumped through a whole lot of hoops!).   After about nine months we were allowed a credit card (with a credit limit of $200).  We were told it would be about two years before we'd be allowed an overdraft.

Having gone through all that rigmarole, there was no way we were going to let that account go when we left.  However we know another customer from that bank, who had their account closed when they advised they were moving permanently overseas.  The bank told them that under new money laundering laws, they weren't allowed to keep the account.  Again, this is a new thing.   The secret might be in that word, "permanently".   If you say you're going overseas for work and you're unsure of your return date, I guess there's a good chance they won't notice if you never change the address back.  

We've just put my sister's address on the bank account.

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Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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54 minutes ago, friedparsley said:

Many Australians open a UK bank account from here, if they are going for an extended holiday in the UK.

Not any longer, they don't.   You used to see that service offered by many banks, but the new money laundering laws means they're not allowed to open bank accounts for foreign residents any more. You've got to be in the country.   When you arrive, they will open an account on the strength of a British passport, but they won't give you access to the account until you provide proof of a permanent address.  

Edited by Marisawright

Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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