Deposits


  1. What happens if I am a member of a credit union that fails?
  2. How long will it take to process my claim?
  3. If I have more than £85,000 in an account, does that mean I will lose money?
  4. What is the position for people who have multiple accounts with banks that are subsidiaries of another bank?
  5. I have my money in a joint account in a High Street bank. How would FSCS pay compensation if the bank failed?
  6. What happens if I owe money to a bank, building society or credit union that fails?
  7. Will you compensate me for any interest I have earned on my account?
  8. Are offshore deposits covered?
  9. Does the Scheme cover deposits made in different currencies?
  10. Are deposits held by nominee companies covered?
  11. Do you cover deposits made through solicitors and other professionals?
  12. Is a business covered if the bank or building society it holds money with fails?
  13. Are pre-paid cards covered by the FSCS?
  14. How much am I covered for if I hold a Cash ISA/NISA?
  15. How much am I covered for if I hold cash in a Stocks and Shares ISA/NISA?
  16. How will FSCS calculate how much compensation I am entitled to?
  17. What should I do if I disagree with the amount of compensation FSCS has paid me and I have not banked the cheque or received cash over the counter at the Post Office?
  18. I do not have another bank account. What should I do with my compensation cheque?
  19. Can FSCS make a compensation payment directly to my account with another bank?
  20. My child has a savings account with a bank, building society or credit union. What will happen to his/her savings?
  21. I make regular savings to my account each month by standing order. Should I cancel the standing order now?
  22. I had a loan with the deposit taker. Will I have to repay it and should I cancel the standing order?
  23. Do I need to notify FSCS if I have recently changed address?
  24. Do I need to notify FSCS if I have recently changed my name?
  25. I am the executor of a depositor who has recently died. Do I need to contact FSCS?
  26. How are offset mortgages dealt with?

1. What happens if I am a member of a credit union that fails?

You do not need to do anything and will not need to lift a finger. FSCS will automatically pay you back your savings according to the account information it receives from your credit union. You will receive your payment through the post within 7 days of the credit union being declared in default.

People with less than £1,000 will receive a letter to get cash over the counter at the Post Office. Please note that the letter you receive will be in an unmarked envelope and will not have FSCS details on it. Anyone with more than £1,000 will receive a cheque. This will also be sent to you in an unmarked envelope.

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2. How long will it take to process my claim?

The length of time a claim takes to process will depend upon a number of factors, like the type and complexity of a claim, and the level of information we need to gather from other sources. Some of these factors may be entirely outside our control, but we are still able to provide general guidelines for each claim type. However, we aim to pay compensation in the vast majority of cases within seven days of the failure of the company. We aim to pay the remaining claims, which are likely to be more complex, within 20 working days.

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3. If I have more than £85,000 in an account, does that mean I will lose money?

A depositor whose total deposits with a failed bank exceed the compensation limit will receive compensation for the amount of their deposit up to the limit of £85,000*.

Deposit claims of UK customers will be paid out in UK Pounds Sterling.

Depositors with deposits above the limit may also receive additional funds in the form of a share of their savings following any distribution of assets as part of the insolvency process for their firm. How much they receive depends on the rate of recoveries (also known as the dividend rate) in the liquidation of the company.

The liquidation process can take a long time to complete. Depositors will have to wait until the liquidator has completed the process to find out how much more they might receive in total. There is no certainty that they will receive any further payments. This process is separate from the FSCS compensation process.

Related information

*From 3 July 2015, FSCS will provide a £1 million protection limit for temporary high balances held with your bank, building society or credit union if it fails. Read our Q&As about temporary high balances for more information.

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4. What is the position for people who have multiple accounts with banks that are subsidiaries of another bank?

For people who hold multiple accounts in banks that are part of a larger group, if each of the banks is separately authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority:

If each of the banks is covered by a single authorisation:

  • FSCS would pay compensation up to the limit of £85,000* once, irrespective of how many different institutions a person held accounts with.

All claims will be paid out in UK Pounds Sterling.

If you have a question about how a bank or building society is authorised, please contact the Financial Conduct Authority Consumer Contact Centre on 0800 111 6768

*From 3 July 2015, FSCS will provide a £1 million protection limit for temporary high balances held with your bank, building society or credit union if it fails. Read our Q&As about temporary high balances for more information.

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5. I have my money in a joint account in a High Street bank. How would FSCS pay compensation if the bank failed?

The compensation limit of £85,000* applies to each depositor for the total of their deposits with an organisation, regardless of how many accounts they hold. In the case of a joint account, the compensation limit is £170,000*.

All deposit claims of UK customers will be paid out in UK Pounds Sterling.

*From 3 July 2015, FSCS will provide a £1 million protection limit for temporary high balances held with your bank, building society or credit union if it fails. Read our Q&As about temporary high balances for more information.

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6. What happens if I owe money to a bank, building society or credit union that fails?

In the event that your bank, building society or credit union fails, you are obliged to continue making repayments in accordance with the terms and conditions of your mortgage, loan, etc. Further information about how to make repayments will be available from the administrator of your bank / building society / credit union.

The FSCS will only consider accounts that have a credit balance for compensation.

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7. Will you compensate me for any interest I have earned on my account?

When the the bank is declared in default by the FSCS, you (the depositor) will be paid any interest owed as part of your compensation amount.

All claims will be paid out in UK Pounds Sterling.

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8. Are offshore deposits covered?

We do not cover deposits outside the European Economic Area (EEA), or in the Channel Islands or Isle of Man.

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9. Does the Scheme cover deposits made in different currencies?

Yes, however all deposit claims of UK customers will be paid out in UK Pounds Sterling.

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10. Are deposits held by nominee companies covered?

We cover deposits held in client accounts, for example by solicitors, and may cover deposits held by nominee companies. FSCS does not protect non-nominative deposits.

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11. Do you cover deposits made through solicitors and other professionals?

We generally cover client account arrangements (such as pooled accounts), which may be set up by solicitors, stockbrokers, landlords or other professionals, provided the deposit-taker (e.g. bank or building society) is authorised to accept deposits, which would normally be the case. The identities of the underlying clients and details of their respective entitlements to the deposit monies can be provided to the FSCS at the time a claim is made.

The Law Society has its own compensation scheme for its members' investment business, that only applies in the case of dishonesty of a solicitor. In those circumstances claims against solicitors in England and Wales should be referred to it. Claims against solicitors in Scotland should be referred to The Law Society of Scotland.

However, if the solicitor is holding your money in a client account with an authorised deposit-taker that fails, then your claim is against the deposit-taker and you should ask us to deal with it. The Law Society provides further guidance on this.

Claims against some other professionals can be made to us, but only if the claim arises on or after 1 December 2001. If your claim is for activities before this date, look at our Claiming compensation booklet for details of the organisations to contact.

Further guidance for landlords, managing agents, resident management companies and others charged with the collection of service charge monies.

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12. Is a business covered if the bank or building society it holds money with fails?

FSCS was set up mainly to assist private individuals, although businesses and small local authorities (such as parish councils) are also covered. 

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13. Are pre-paid cards covered by the FSCS?

The FSCS does not protect e-money which could include money on pre-paid cards. This is because e-money does not satisfy the definition of a “deposit” and so is not within the scope of FSCS protection. E-money is covered by the Payment Services Directive which explains the protection given to users of e-money.

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14. How much am I covered for if I hold a Cash ISA/NISA?

Where a Cash ISA is provided directly by an authorised deposit taker, this will generally be covered by the deposit limit of £85,000 should the deposit taker fail. Where a Cash ISA is provided by a non-deposit taking ISA provider and that ISA provider holds the cash at a deposit taker, this will generally be covered by the deposit limit of £85,000 should the deposit taker fail. Where a Cash ISA is provided by a non-deposit taking ISA provider, the cash may be protected by the ISA provider, but this cash will not be covered by FSCS compensation in the event of the failure of the ISA provider.

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15. How much am I covered for if I hold cash in a Stocks and Shares ISA/NISA?

This will depend on the type of firm providing the stocks and shares ISA and the purpose for which the cash is being held. If the ISA provider is an authorised deposit taker, this will generally be covered by the deposit limit of £85,000*.

If the stocks and shares ISA provider is not an authorised deposit taker, and the ISA contract between you and the firm sets out that the cash is available for investment, the limit for compensation should the ISA provider fail will be £50,000.

If the contract sets out that the cash is not to be used for investment but is to remain cash and is held by the non-deposit taker, it should be kept separate from the firm’s own funds to protect it should the ISA provider fail.

If the stocks and shares ISA provider holds the money at a deposit taker and that deposit taker fails, then the limit will be £85,000*.

It is important that customers check what protections and compensation is available to them with their individual ISA providers.

*From 3 July 2015, FSCS will provide a £1 million protection limit for temporary high balances held with your bank, building society or credit union if it fails. Read our Q&As about temporary high balances for more information.

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16. How will FSCS calculate how much compensation I am entitled to?

FSCS will receive information from your deposit taker detailing your individual credit balance.  The amount of compensation you receive will be the balance on your account as at date of default. 

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17. What should I do if I disagree with the amount of compensation FSCS has paid me and I have not banked the cheque or received cash over the counter at the Post Office?

If you disagree with the amount of compensation paid do get in touch with us or the administrator (if the deposit taker is in administration).  

Do not return your payment to FSCS unless you are specifically requested to do so.

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18. I do not have another bank account. What should I do with my compensation cheque?

You can arrange to open a bank account with another deposit taker (e.g. a bank, a credit union, building society or the Post Office) and bank the cheque.  

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19. Can FSCS make a compensation payment directly to my account with another bank?

FSCS is not in a position to make electronic money transfers to other banks. FSCS can make payments either by cheque or by cash over the counter.

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20. My child has a savings account with a bank, building society or credit union. What will happen to his/her savings?

For junior members, FSCS will send a payment in the name of the account holder for the balance of their account at the date of default.

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21. I make regular savings to my account each month by standing order. Should I cancel the standing order now?

Yes, if this payment relates solely to savings then you should as no further money will be credited to your savings account. 

However, you will need to give your bank/building society a couple of days’ notice before the payment is due to come out of your account. If your standing order also relates to loan repayments do not cancel it and see question below.

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22. I had a loan with the deposit taker. Will I have to repay it and should I cancel the standing order?

Do not cancel any repayments as your loan agreement remains in place and you must maintain your repayments. Loan repayments will usually be managed by the administrators who will contact you about this.    

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23. Do I need to notify FSCS if I have recently changed address?

FSCS will send payment to the address that your bank, building society or credit union hold on their database. If you did not notify them of your change of address before they were declared in default, or you notified them of this change but did not receive confirmation that their records had been updated before they were declared in default, FSCS will need to see evidence of the change of address before any compensation payment can be made.

Documents that can be used as evidence include a council tax bill, a utility bill (not a mobile phone bill) or benefits entitlement letter, as long as they are less than three months old.  

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24. Do I need to notify FSCS if I have recently changed my name?

If you have already received your cash over the counter, or banked the compensation cheque, you do not need to take any further action. If you have not received your compensation payment we will need to see evidence of your name change before any payment can be made. You will therefore need to provide original documentation or certified copy of an official document showing your change of name, for example, a marriage certificate or deed poll and this will allow us to update our records and process the claim. 

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25. I am the executor of a depositor who has recently died. Do I need to contact FSCS?

If the estate has already received cash over the counter, or banked the compensation cheque, you do not need to take any further action.  If the estate has not received the compensation payment, you will need to send FSCS the Death Certificate, Grant of Probate and a copy of the Will (or Letter of administration).  These should be either certified copies or original documents.  These documents are required before FSCS can make a compensation payment.   

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26. How are offset mortgages dealt with?

An offset mortgage is a type of product which links your savings to your mortgage.

If your deposit account is separate from your mortgage account balance, the FSCS would not apply set-off and would pay compensation for the deposit account on a gross basis up to the compensation limit. However, the insolvency practitioner may seek to set-off any balance of the deposit above the compensation limit against the mortgage under insolvency law.

If your deposit account is combined with your mortgage account and effectively operated as one large overdraft, the FSCS would have to treat it as an overdraft and no compensation would be payable.

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