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Bank problems at CA autobank! lost deposits!


Arty

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My local branch of credit agricole recently converted the branch to remove the traditional counter and instead installed machines in which to deposit money. The "new" system involves money put into an envelope called a versement d'especes deplace. You the customer fill in all your details on the outside of the envelope and then rip of the top copy and enclose with your cash, a second flimsy copy is retained. The envelope is then place in a letter box. I put a number of cash deposits into my account in the run up to xmas, each of 500E at a time. One of these amounts did not get credited to my account. I have to now prove it went in! At present the retained copy is lost. Its a fool of a system, has anyone had the same problem???
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Thanks for your reply Ron, this post box does not give a receipt like the uk banks. the only receipt is the carbon one you take off the front of the envelope which is under the copy you take off and put in with the cash. It is a silly system. My gf was with me, so we both know the money went in, but its now upto me to prove it!The money went in on the 23rd dec, i guess someone in the bank had a good christmas!
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A couple of suggestions. Try and think what time you put the money in. Also, go and do a porte plainte at the gendarmerie. Take all these 'flimsy' receipts you have and your bank statements.

This is theft or fraud and should be treat as such. Also, there are usually cameras in these banks and if you have an idea as to what time you paid it in, they should show that you were putting something at least in the machine at that time.

 

ps and don't forget to make it clear at the gendarmerie that the bank no longer had a counter, which you would prefer to have used.

 

pps if it is fraud then you may be refered to the DGCCRF, who are the people who deal consumer things and fraud.

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Thanks that is a very good idea, I am back in UK at present. I plan to be back in France in early Feb I will take it further when I am there. I am waiting for Britline to complete their investigate at present.
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If you haven't done it already, send them a letter with it all written down by recorded delivery where you get a receipt when they have received it...... and ofcourse keep a copy for  yourself with this receipt when you get it. And any correspondance, keep not only the correspondance but the envelope as well........ it is proof of when they posted it and important in France.

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Many thanks, the blue flimsy slip is lost at the moment. I will have to search my house when I return in Feb. I have all the others for previous transactions and one following the disputed event. I only hope I didnt leave it attached by accident to the slip that goes in with the money! That would be very unlike me to make such a mistake. You would think the bank could just check their balance for that day, or they day they got round to doing the work!. It would appear to take between 2-3 day under the new system to credit cash into your account.
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As a former bank clerk, this system seems very poor. Although french banking systems are still quite a mystery to me. They will happily change the payments too and from one's account and deny anything has happened. I have no idea as to when or if they ever balance anything.

Also if you can't find this blue slip then it is hard to see how you could take it much further. That is the nearest thing to proof that you have.

Two or three days to credit cash........ well if the branch isn't open well it could, but really cash should go in the same day and automatically also be credited to clients accounts.

Personally I do not like the CA. I am obliged to use them, as the association I help run has an account with them, but I have had nothing but petty problems with them.

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Hi, Thanks. If this situation happened in the UK I would contact the banking ombudsman and they would look into it.But in france its a bit like the police checking out the police! a bit too in house for my liking. A solicitor friend has advised me that the cost of recovery could be greater that 500e lost. I work hard when I am in the UK and the whole point of the french house was to de-stress. I have all my other paying in blue slips, I fear the worst that I either left this one stuck to the back of the white slip you enclose with the money or dropped it. The daft thing is that the info appears on the outside of the envelope as well, because all sheets have carbon. One bank employee looked over once and said you should include a photocopy of your RIB! Thats a new one, the rib number is written by the client on the envelope. Even when I was first shown the procedure the bank employee didnt mention including a copy rib. I think the bank should check the contents and stamp the blue copy the client keeps and they should put the envelope in the box.   
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I still haven't resolved the theft of 13000 € from my CA account before Xmas-things move at snails pace.The bank haven't refunded me the money ,they say they want to catch the thief-we say we need our money.Stalemate!!I think we might need an English speaking solicitor.We filed a report with the Gendarmerie 3 weeks ago and haven't heard anything from anyone!We went to see the bank manager yesterday and he was 35 mins late for the meeting and basically shrugged his shoulders and promised to ring me today-he hasn't!!We are £10,000 lighter at the moment and do not feel confident enough to put any more of our heard earned cash into the account-consequently we are overdrawn and cannot write cheques etc. Someone's head should roll but there are no volunteers!
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Hi, sorry to read your news, thats a much bigger problem. At the moment mine is possibly a clerical error. Today I have been asked by Britline to formally request they take it further, which I did by fax. This enables them to do a "reclamation". This means they will look into the possibility my cash has gone into another account. They have admitted that they once spelt my name wrong, which they later corrected (news to me). I also now see that Britline in Calvados has to go through a regional office in the south, who then get onto the branch. This is why cash paid in under this new system takes 2-3 days to be credited. I have to give credit to the young lady at Britline who is dealing with me, she is helpful. I know if this happened in the UK the banking ombudsman would deal with it for me. Fingers crossed for us both eh. Art 
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[quote]Hi, sorry to read your news, thats a much bigger problem. At the moment mine is possibly a clerical error. Today I have been asked by Britline to formally request they take it further, which I did by ...[/quote]

  Thanks Art-lets keep everything crossed!! Another meeting today with the bank but they don't seem to see any need for speed.If it was them 13000€ lighter they might ;-)
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Hi Art,

Our branch of C.A. also changed to this system and I was not at all happy with it.  I went to a member of staff and requested that they transfer the cash as before.  She would not comply and referred me to the new procedure with little or no instruction.  In fact she was most unhelpful.  I knew that this system was an accident waiting to happen as you have no proof whatsoever of postage.  The envelopes are freely available in the public area and they could say you simply completed the documentation and retained the counterfoil without sending the cash.  Your unfortunate experience has confirmed my fears.  As I intend to transfer cash between accounts quite regularly I will have to find an alternative in the light of your experience.

Incidentally I also did not like the machine (if that is the correct term) where you deposit the envelope.  You have to double check that the envelope had gone.

I felt just as uncomfortable with a related experience when I transferred cash by Royal Mail.  Despite the fact they provided insurance up to £500 should the cash go missing in the post, there was no mechanism should the recipient say that the envelope did not contain the stated amount.

I think that there could be a similar problem with C.A.s system even if they do receive the envelope.

I certainly will not be using it anymore.  They will have to change this system it is just plain stupid!

Please let us know how you get on.

Jon

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[quote]Hi, sorry to read your news, thats a much bigger problem. At the moment mine is possibly a clerical error. Today I have been asked by Britline to formally request they take it further, which I did by ...[/quote]

Good to see progress Art, hope you get there,

You say "This is why cash paid in under this new system takes 2-3 days to be credited"

I think you will find that although the method has changed at the automated branches, the time for the cash to show in your account has not changed,  You are paying in to a CA Midi branch and not CA Calvados, they are different banks under the CA umbrella. Under the old and new systems, my credits to CA Nord Midi pyrenees went and still do, go in the same day.

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Thanks Jon & Ron, I am still waiting for the outcome of the "reclamation" enquiry. I am returning to my house in france on the 5th Feb (ski time)

I will search the house again, I have all the other blue slips, my concern is that if I cant find the missing one then I either left it attached to the white one you include with the cash or dropped it in the bank. If that happened whoever opened the envelope would know I had a problem when it comes to proving the deposit. I may have to consider talking to the police.

While filling in one of these envelopes a members of staff looked over and said you should also enclose a photocopy of your RIB! If this is a requirement why not put that info on the envelope. My passport details where on each of these envelopes, maybe they dont like the english? Most of french people I have met in my area appear to welcome the english, maybe I was unlucky this time.  Will keep you posted

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Arty why did you put the passport details on the envelope?

I really hope that you manage to find the paying in slip, the reason being that I'm not even sure if the gendarmes will be interested if you don't. As I said, if you can remember just about the time and date that you paid this in, then maybe their cameras will prove that at least you appeared to be paying something in.

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Ours has recently gone over to this scaled down operation too and I utterly detest it. I do not and have never trusted machines that take your money or cards and now there is no personal touch at all. All we have in the "office" now is a small round table with one woman and a computer,not the friendly group of three with a waiting area anymore. I feel very sorry for the elderly farming fraternity here who walk about with bundles of cash and cannot for the life of them understand these machines and what buttons they have to put their fingers on. Arty I hope you get your money back,it must be logged somewhere in the CA Accounts side of things surely at the date you paid it in.
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Val I think that Arty just dropped an envelope into a sort of fancy urn, I don't think that it will be registered anywhere.... there is the crunch. Even in the UK one has to put one's card in and pin into the machine how much is going in and the machine does give a receipt.
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Dear Teamedup & Val, the reason I put my passport details on the form is when I was shown the procedure by an employee of CA on the first occasion following conversation from a real bank to the current silly system The guy showed me that I could not use the envelopes provided along side the paying in machine. Instead I had to use special envelopes that are kept in a drawer. These envelopes are called versement d'especes deplace on which is a space for ID purposes. He asked if I had my passport. I always carry it so that was used for ID.

I wish the letter box (deposit taker) did give a receipt like a lot of UK banks do, at least then I would have conformation that at least something entered the great black hole!

I rang Britline today for an update, although I have said on previous postings that they are being helpful. My call today prompted the lady to say "glad you rang, not heard from Quillan CA branch, I must chase them up" Nice they are taking such a pro-active approach eh? She asked if I was going to visit the branch on my next visit. Cant think why I would want to do you. I told her my trust has gone, the staff dont speak english,* and I just might be a little rude! I told her I would rather pay the £20 per time swift transfer fee and send a large sum to top up the account than risk loosing another 500E, she got my point

* I know I should speak french, its getting better but not upto a full blown financial dispute. I am learning.

 

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Arty, I have no idea as to why you would need ID, or mark your ID, to pay cash in. You are paying it into your account. I have to go to my bank and I'll ask if this is usual french banking rules, or just the CA. I'll have to see the CA soon anyway and I'll ask them too. I really do not understand it.

I think that it would be a little better if they had proper security protocols about paying cash into your account than who you are.

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Dear Teamedup, It may be that CA are falling into line with money laundering rules. In the UK some of the banks went a bit OTT last year with the new rules. It was one of the many reasons I left Barclays after many years. Even though I had been a customer for 20yrs, 12 of those at the same branch, I had to start to show photo driving licence and have its long number recorded on the debit card slip, even when paying a Barclaycard bill in my branch of Barclays using my Barclays debit card!

The money laundering rules concentrate on cash transactions, these envelopes are for cash only (pas de cheque) so maybe thats why ID is required. The other two options for ID are carte de sejour & CNI whatever that is? Let me know what they say to you in CA. 

I got one the envelopes out to check the other forms of ID, I have just noticed the printed on the right are the instructions: A detacher avant d'inserer le feuillet dans la pochette. My translator software translates this to:To detach before inserting the leaflet into the sleeve. Thats fine on the top white copy your supposed to put in with the cash, but its also on the blue copy that your supposed to keep! How misleading is that?

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CNI is, if I remember rightly, Carte Nationale d'Identité. In other words, French ID card.

Our CA, at least in larger branches, has always been pretty stupid about paying in cash. Mrs C is treasurer of a local association and often has to pay in small amounts of cash. The desk at the front has always taken the cheques, but to pay in cash - even 10€ - you have to go round the back and wait in line, for ages, at a window dealing with defaulters, foreign travellers wanting cash in other currencies etc.

I do hope that you get your problem sorted out. After your experience I shall certainly be stopping using our CA account (at a small local branch) if or when they stop accepting payments over the desk, as they still do at present.

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I was in my bank today and asked what proof I would need to pay in sums of cash at another of their branches. Very confused they were, why would I even think I should be doing that they wanted to know. Then they decided that they had misunderstood and that I would need ID to withdraw at one of their other branches. Ah non, I explained, to pay in.

I was there an hour in all, not just this to ask about incidentally, but a few queries about all sorts of things. Anyway, they said if there were regular unaccounted for cash deposits, they would be asking what was going on, but basically someone paying in such piddling amounts of 500 euros from time to time to pay bills etc did not require ID to pay these sums in.

 

When I'm in the other banks I have dealings with I'll ask what they had to say.

 

ps I only remembered when I got home that when I paid in around 1000euros cash last year at another branch of my bank, they didn't ask for ID at all, and it all went through OK.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I thought I would post an update, yesterday I got a telephone from Britline telling me that a letter was on its way to me to say after all CA's internal investigations CA regret that they will not be refunding me the lost 500 Euros

This is despite a number of conversations to the contary, saying they where likely to find in my favour and credit my account. CA will not confirm how many people are present when the cash envelopes are opened. In the UK most banks have two people present to avoid temptation. CA dont keep cctv tapes for very long (even though I asked for these shortly after the problem was discovered) I can prove the time of deposit down to a 5 min time slot, I took the cash out of a hole in the wall machine across the road which gave me a timed receipt, I then walked the 100 metres to my CA branch (witnessed by my girlfriend) filled in the envelope and popped it in the box inside the branch with a member of staff watching. I know he was watching as he suggested I enclose a copy of a RIB along with the other paperwork! (Why? because they have had problems I wonder?)

CA's newly introduced system has failed and they expect me to pick up the tab - wrong. I now have to consider my next move. Should I send a  letter to the CEO or visit the police? I bought my french house to chill out in away from my hectic work life in the UK. Has anyone else had any problems with these machine since my original posting?

On the positive side l had a good couple of weeks recently, some skiing etc, got back last sunday to UK.

 

 

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