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‘Help me, I need a liability letter from my bank’

Gulf News helps readers resolve their complaints with Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) and Etisalat

Gulf News

Delayed

I applied for a liability letter from Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) since November 6, 2013 and until now (November 25), I haven’t received it. I called ADIB’s call center and also visited their branch. They called me once and told me that by Thursday (November 21), or maximum, by Sunday (November 24), I would get the final answer on when to collect it.

But after their last call, I haven’t been contacted again, although I sent them a reminder through their call center. By keeping me waiting for a letter for three weeks, it shows unprofessionalism and unfairness from a bank like ADIB.

I am kindly asking help from Gulf News to help me in this issue because I need my letter urgently.

From Mr Kassem Haider, Sharjah

The management of ADIB responds:

As part of ADIB’s procedures, customers asking to move their liabilities to another financial institutions are usually contacted by our retention team for us to assess the reason behind the move. Our customers’ retention team contacted Mr Haider to see if they can offer him a solution. The customer requested for extra financing, which required process and approval from higher management. After studying his case and due to the fact that Mr Haider has other liabilities with ADIB, the bank was not able to approve him. He was contacted yesterday (November 26) and informed about the decision. The team apologised to the customer for the delay and as a gesture of goodwill, offered to waive the fee associated with issuance of the Liability Certificate.

We have investigated the complaint and the customer was contacted yesterday (November 26) by our customer service team. The customer accepted the apology and visited our branch in Dubai to collect the certificate.

Mr Haider reponds:

Indeed, ADIB called yesterday (November 26) and apologised for the delay in giving me my letter, and waived the letter fees. They even reduced the outstanding amount, which in the beginning, was amazing, until I got the liability letter. I was shocked to see that they included with my liabilities, an amount of Dh51,000 for the credit card, which I have from ADIB and I am not even using, and the outstanding amount on the card is zero. When I inquired about it, they told me that this amount has to be paid from the new bank as a guarantee, and then this amount will be refunded back to me after 45 days, and no bank will agree to do so. Kindly note that I was not informed about any such thing while activating the card, which is considered as misleading for customers to get their products.

The management of ADIB responds:

The Letter of Guarantee (LG)/Cash Collateral amount being referred by the customer (i.e. Dh51, 000) is a standard banking practice and all banks provide that when settling liabilities with other banks if a customer has a credit/covered card.

The standard process requires the customer’s bank to ask the settling bank for either a LG or cash collateral to safeguard any transactions that are not billed at the time of printing the Liability Certificate (LC) and might actualise later, often within 45 days after card cancellation - even if no transactions have been reported in the LC. This is because there are cases where card transaction slips might be realised later - therefore banks often give a window of 45-50 days after the credit card has been cancelled. Customer should not worry as this is a market practice and if the other bank does not want to give a cash collateral, it can give a LG.

Mr Haider responds:

I had a relation before with Citibank, and when I transferred to ADIB, Citibank didn’t ask from them a LG. The new bank won’t give any LG, because it’s not a charity group. They will need a guarantee for it and this is why when I spoke with the person from ADIB about the LG issue, I offered them to give them a cheque from my side ‘personal check, not from the new bank’ as a guarantee, and they can keep the cheque with them in case there was a transaction shown in the future on the card and after 45 days, I can take back the cheque, or I was ready to sign a commitment or guarantee letter from ADIB, that I will now be responsible to pay any amount that would show on the card, but they refused and told that it has to be from the new bank.

The management of ADIB responds:

We checked with the team and they assured that the LG is a standard practice.

Mr Haider responds:

Two weeks ago, I cancelled the card, which caused the problem as they said that after 45 days the card won’t show on the liability letter. I am waiting for the 45 days to pass to apply for a new liability letter from ADIB, as I cannot use the old liability letter because it has already expired.

I spoke with the lady who contacted me from ADIB and informed her that I would need to apply for a new letter after the 45 days. She told that I can contact her then to get the letter through her.

Additional charges

The complaints section in Gulf News inspired me to write about my experience. It is a wonderful job being done to resolve reader’s issues. I initially had an eVision account for the past three years and have always paid the monthly charges in advance. After I paid the usual charges for the eVision account on July 4, 2013, the account showed a credit of Dh85.21.

On August 3, a technician visited my home and the eVision account was changed to eLife account. He disconnected the former account and took the old set top box along with him and told me that my eVision account has been discontinued and now it is eLife. However, after a few months, I noticed that my eVision account has been active and the same charges follow every month.

I have been following up with Etisalat for the closure of eVision account on the system and for transfer of credit of Dh85.21 from the account to my eLife account, but to no avail.

With no other means, I hereby request Gulf News to intervene so that there is closure to this case.

From Mr Antonio D’souza, Dubai

The management of Etisalat responds:

Kindly note that our customer’s issue with Etisalat was resolved.

Mr D’souza responds:

The Etisalat personnel contacted and asked me to go to the Etisalat Business Centre in Al Nahda, Sharjah, from where I was directed to their Business Centre at Bur Dubai. I was finally directed to the Head Office in Deira where the issue was finally resolved. I have only Gulf News to thank for their intervention otherwise the issue with Etisalat would not have got resolved.

Editor’s note: If you have similar consumer complaints and wish to raise them with the newspaper, contact us by email at readers@gulfnews.com

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