- The customers have the right to access to and fully understand the terms and conditions relevant to each and every product or service they obtain from banks. In this regard, the licensed banks should ensure that:
a) the ‘Terms and Conditions’ associated with each product or service are made available to customers in languages preferred by them;
b) a copy of the ‘Terms and Conditions’ is given to the prospective customer prior to offering or recommending a product or service and any clarification sought by customers is clearly explained;
c) an officer carrying out the duties of a relationship officer should clearly explain to the customer of the terms and conditions and features of the products/services, provide a comparison of alternative products/services available and give reasonable time for the customer to make a decision;
d) a written confirmation is obtained from the customer that the details of the products or services and their terms and conditions were received, explained and understood;
e) all the documents pertaining to the product or service are duly completed and signed by the customer. (Incomplete documents and obtaining signatures on blank papers/documents are avoided.);
f) any changes made by licensed banks to the agreed terms and conditions on products or services should be informed to the customers in writing or through paper notice or any other appropriate way before such changes are made.
- The customers have the right to know specifically the following under ‘Terms and Conditions’.
a) The details of the bank’s general charges such as interest rates, fees and commissions, if any, required to be paid by the customer including the method of computing interest charges.
b) The bank’s procedure for receiving complaints and the resolution mechanism.
c) The course of recovery actions a bank may follow in the event of any default by the customer on his/her obligations and bank’s expenses that will be reimbursed from the customer.
d) Any compensation proposed to be paid by the relevant customers in case of pre-mature withdrawal/termination of participation in a product/service by the customers.
e) Any restrictions on opening of accounts, closing of accounts, maintenance of accounts (e.g., minimum balance), transfer of funds by customers and policies and procedures on dormant accounts and abandoned property.
f) The disclosure of customer information to a party legally authorised to obtain such information.
g) The rules regarding
(i) reporting of suspicious transactions and above-the-threshold transactions to the Financial Intelligence Unit
(ii) the reporting procedures that the customer should follow in the case of stolen cards /financial instruments and
(iii) liability of the bank and the customer.
h) The procedures to be employed by the bank to foreclose on the property held as collateral for a loan and the consequences thereof to the customer and options available to him/her.
Compensation from withdrawal/ cancellation of products/ services by banks
In the event a licensed bank seeks to withdraw/terminate a product or service already on contract, especially deposit products, customers have the right to receive a reasonable time with an exit compensation scheme disclosed in advance.