Bank closures


October 17, 2020

Greetings to you, Mr. Editor,

I must express that I am bewildered by a letter in CBN (Oct 16-22) from a M.E. Rogers regarding the situation of U.K. banks closing ex-pats accounts, and therefore depriving them of their state pensions. This person states that pensioners must have a U.K. account in order to receive their pensions if they reside in another E.U. country, as it is illegal to pay direct into a foreign bank account.

I would be interested to know, if this person is therefore suggesting that the department of works, and pensions are continually breaking some form of law, due to the fact that for a number of years now since retirement, the above department has paid my state pension into my Spanish bank account each month.

In addition to this, my wife also applied for her pension once it was due, and has enjoyed the same monthly payment into her Spanish bank account, it must also be noted, that neither my wife, or I have any financial connection with the U.K, so payments can only be paid directly into our accounts here. I am therefore taken aback by the majority of the letter from Mr/Mrs M.E.Rogers.

I can only conclude that we have either been receiving illegal payments each month, or, as I suspect this person has heard, or obtained incorrect information! So I can only suggest if it is necessary, re-arranging the method of any payments from source.

My enquiries from the horse’s mouth suggests that the present arrangement between myself, my wife, and the Dept of W and P, will not change.

My sympathies do though, go out to those who have regularly drawn money across, should this threatened closure of U.K. accounts go ahead.

G.D. Johnson.

October 20, 2020


I have to take issue with the letter you printed last week from M E Rogers that stated categorically that a UK bank account was needed to receive UK pensions. That will scare a lot of people but is so not true.

My husband has a military pension and a state pension. I have a teacher’s pension and a state pension. We have no UK address or bank account. All four pensions are paid direct to our Spanish bank account and have been for the last ten years with absolutely no problems.
Please stop these scare stories. Life is difficult enough at the moment without more angst.

Yours faithfully
Sue Mcnae

22 October, 2020

Dear Sir,

What on earth is M.E. Rogers talking about?

Of course banks can close your account if they so wish. The solution is to change your bank.
My UK Bank (HSBC) has told me that it has no intention of closing my a/c provided that I use it more than once a year.

I am tax resident in Spain and have my and my wife’s State pension paid directly to my Spanish bank at the current rate of exchange. The UK pensions office is not breaking any laws in so doing.

KInd regards,
James Bradley.

Please read information from the British government on the issue of UK bank accounts and pensions on p3 of the Costa Living supplement


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