Ulster Bank to Refund Pounds 2m after Overcharging Student Accounts
By Paul Gosling
Ulster Bank is to refund 2m to student account customers overcharged in fees and interest rates. About 16,000 customers in the UK are affected, plus nearly 11,000 account holders in the Irish Republic.
Overcharging occurred because the bank failed to apply concessionary student rates to thousands of accounts. The systems error was discovered in an internal review and only affects student accounts opened prior to December 2005.
In a statement the bank said: "Ulster Bank wishes to apologise to the affected customers for the matter, and will be contacting these individuals to refund them in full over the next few months." Both the Financial Services Authority and Ireland's Financial Regulator have been informed and notified of the system for making repayments.
Total refunds in the UK are 1.05m and in the Irish Republic 950,000 (680,000). Average refunds are 66 (88 in Ireland). Compound interest will be included in the payments. The bank has established a helpline to answer customer queries.
Ulster Bank is the Irish division of the Royal Bank of Scotland. A spokeswoman for RBS said that Ulster Bank operates its own systems and that other RBS operations and customers are not affected. …