In our modern society, money is a substance that we all need to live a healthy and comfortable life. We use our money to pay for food, water and accommodation – and sometimes it can feel like we have no money left for everything else we need to stay alive. So it can be particularly distressing when a payment leaves your bank account without your permission.
But how often can this happen, and can companies take money out of your account without your consent?
Down below we have compiled together an informative guide that covers everything you need to know about your bank account and the people who can access it. In this guide, we have outlined the process you need to follow when faced with an unauthorised payment, and how you can receive a refund under certain circumstances.
Can A Company Take Money Out Of Your Account Without Permission?
The short answer to this question is no – a company cannot take money out of your account without your permission.
When funds are removed from your bank account, they have to be authorised by the account holder. This means that there should be no money leaving your account without your knowledge or consent.
However, this does not mean that unauthorised transactions are unheard of. If you happen to discover that money has left your account without your permission, then you should contact your bank or financial institution immediately.
When unauthorised payments are taken from your account, this could mean that you are being targeted by hackers for criminal activity.
Your bank will be able to discern if the payment is unauthorised or not, and you could even be allowed to claim a refund for the money that you have lost.
How To Protect Your Bank Account?
When you apply for a new debit or credit card over the telephone or through online banking – you should always be told how you can keep your personal information safe. It is always important that you ensure the security of your account by keeping your PIN and password safe.
The bank or company that issued the card should also alert you to how you can contact them if your card is stolen or goes missing.
Now we understand that a missing card is not always the result of theft or fraud – but you will want to make sure that your card is not being used in your absence.
If you misplace or lose your card, then you should contact your bank immediately to cancel it, otherwise, you could risk a criminal accessing your funds.
APP fraud (otherwise known as authorised push payment fraud) is a form of fraud where a person will try to trick you into transferring money to a new account that is held in their name.
Because this fraud involves you authorising the money leaving your account, it can sometimes go undetected by your bank.
Most banks and financial institutions will have APP codes of practice, which often means they will return your stolen money without issue.
When it comes to APP fraud, the bank will not blame you for the occurrence and they may even offer training programs or information to help you spot a fraudulent company.
How To Apply For A Refund?
If you have noticed that an unauthorised payment has been taken out of your house – then you could be eligible for a refund. In most instances, your bank is legally bound to refund the payment without any delay or question – unless they believe you are committing fraud
When applying for a refund, your bank will often ask you some questions about the payment and ask you to write an account of your experience. When your bank authorises the refund, any charges or interest you have paid will also be returned to you.
However, this does not mean that a refund will always be accepted. The bank is allowed to deny you a refund if they believe you are an active participant in fraudulent activity.
Why A Bank Could Refuse Your Refund?
If your bank refuses your refund claim, then this could be the result of various reasons.
- The bank has proven that you authorised the payment in question.
- The bank has proven that you have participated in fraudulent activity.
- The bank has proven that you are guilty of ‘gross negligence and have failed to protect the security details of your bank account.
- You have alerted the bank about an unauthorised payment 12-13 months after the payment was removed. (Make sure to contact your bank immediately!)
- The bank has proven that the payment was taken from an overdrawn account with your authorisation or the authorisation of someone associated with you.
- The payment was made using a credit token by a person who had your authorization.