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MVL: Metro Bank not releasing my funds for 2 months

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    MVL: Metro Bank not releasing my funds for 2 months

    As the title says, Metro Bank is holding my money hostage.
    For two months myself and my liquidator are trying to get in the possession of the funds and they are not releasing it.
    Metro Bank is blaming their backlog for the delay.

    I tried calling them many times, sent emails, opened a complaint, still nothing.
    If I try to ask specific details about the case, they say they can only speak to the liquidator.
    Liquidator is only getting canned email from them.

    Is there anything else I can do?
    How long does it usually take for a bank to give the funds to the liquidator?
    Anyone else having issues with Metro Bank?

    #2
    Originally posted by Syd View Post
    As the title says, Metro Bank is holding my money hostage.
    For two months myself and my liquidator are trying to get in the possession of the funds and they are not releasing it.
    Metro Bank is blaming their backlog for the delay.

    I tried calling them many times, sent emails, opened a complaint, still nothing.
    If I try to ask specific details about the case, they say they can only speak to the liquidator.
    Liquidator is only getting canned email from them.

    Is there anything else I can do?
    How long does it usually take for a bank to give the funds to the liquidator?
    Anyone else having issues with Metro Bank?
    The liquidator is the person who needs to deal with it as it's their company (and money) at the moment.
    merely at clientco for the entertainment

    Comment


      #3
      MVL Online have very much seen a split in banks since Covid started:

      - Barclays/Cater Allen - brilliant, will turn round our requests typically within 1-2 working days (means first distribution in ~2 weeks after appointment, as we need to open estate bank account first which takes a little while).

      Credit also to Monzo, Starling, Lloyds, NatWest and others. Not as fast as the above, but will typically turn around our requests within a few weeks.

      - HSBC/Santander/Metro Bank/Tide - terrible, 2+ months on we'll still be chasing them. We've raised formal complaints re all these banks in the last few months. Their response is typically just "Covid", "backlog", "doing all we can". I had some sympathy in the first month of the first lockdown, but we're 9+ months after that now. To still be well behind is simply not making any effort to resolve the problem.

      We did end up going beyond "internal" formal complaint and raised one complaint to the Ombudsman, against Tide, middle of last year. To date all we've had is a periodic request for further information. 6 months on zero progress in terms of the Ombudsman complaint (of course Tide did eventually action our request). Therefore doing this again seems utterly pointless.

      Afraid there's not much you/the liquidator can do. They/you will get funds eventually, but it's entirely in the bank's control. Some of the banks don't seem to care, and there's essentially no negative consequences for them. It sucks.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by Maslins View Post
        MVL Online have very much seen a split in banks since Covid started:

        - Barclays/Cater Allen - brilliant, will turn round our requests typically within 1-2 working days (means first distribution in ~2 weeks after appointment, as we need to open estate bank account first which takes a little while).

        Credit also to Monzo, Starling, Lloyds, NatWest and others. Not as fast as the above, but will typically turn around our requests within a few weeks.

        - HSBC/Santander/Metro Bank/Tide - terrible, 2+ months on we'll still be chasing them. We've raised formal complaints re all these banks in the last few months. Their response is typically just "Covid", "backlog", "doing all we can". I had some sympathy in the first month of the first lockdown, but we're 9+ months after that now. To still be well behind is simply not making any effort to resolve the problem.

        We did end up going beyond "internal" formal complaint and raised one complaint to the Ombudsman, against Tide, middle of last year. To date all we've had is a periodic request for further information. 6 months on zero progress in terms of the Ombudsman complaint (of course Tide did eventually action our request). Therefore doing this again seems utterly pointless.

        Afraid there's not much you/the liquidator can do. They/you will get funds eventually, but it's entirely in the bank's control. Some of the banks don't seem to care, and there's essentially no negative consequences for them. It sucks.
        So the best advice would be to switch to Cater Allen / Mondo / Starling and move all the money there before starting the MVL process.
        Last edited by eek; 7 January 2021, 10:22.
        merely at clientco for the entertainment

        Comment


          #5
          Would have been a better move if I manually transfer the funds to the liquidator on the date of the liquidation?
          Last edited by Syd; 7 January 2021, 11:38.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Syd View Post
            Would have been a better move if I manually transfer the funds to the liquidator on the date of the liquidation?
            We do hear clients suggest this sometimes, but as a firm we're against it for a few reasons:
            1) if you do it before the liquidator is legally appointed, you're voluntarily sending money to a third party who has no legal relationship with your company.
            2) if you do it imminently after the liquidation is legally appointed, legally you're doing something you don't have the authority to do.
            3) realistically unless you wait a while after liquidator appointment, they won't have a bespoke estate account set up to house your company's funds. You're therefore at best putting your money into an account potentially mixed with lots of other client funds.
            4) the above assumes no fraud...but of course you've got the risk that the "liquidator" is actually a scammer. If you voluntarily send all your money to a third party, and it later transpires that was a daft move, your bank is unlikely to be sympathetic.
            5) potentially there's no fraud but you make a daft mistake, a typo in the bank details, and funds go astray. Again, you're unlikely to have much comeback against liquidator or bank, assuming it was your mistake.

            Yes, some of the banks are making the normal best practice painfully slow. However, doing it this way reduces the risk.

            To anyone else reading this, some liquidators will recommend you transfer the balance to them around the time of their appointment. This doesn't necessarily mean they're dodgy, and from a practical perspective can lead to you getting your funds quicker. However, do ensure you've done your due diligence on the liquidator firm first, and take great care when instigating the transfer.

            Comment


              #7
              Yeah Metro took 2-3 months to transfer the money to MVL Online, and they do it by cheque.

              I would say MVL Online were great at keeping me in the loop and chasing Metro all the time for updates.

              Comment


                #8
                Useful to see the timelines mentioned in previous threads. I bank with Santander, so I'd be in very slow end of the spectrum.

                Is the option of opening another business account with a faster bank and transferring the money actually a suitable one?

                Finally a question for @Maslins: the majority of liquidators seem to prefer a Day 1 distribution with the director instructing the payments themselves. Is it really that controversial? Their argument is that they would have been appointed as liquidators already by then, so they can instruct the director to make the payments.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by bcontractor View Post
                  Is the option of opening another business account with a faster bank and transferring the money actually a suitable one?

                  Finally a question for @Maslins: the majority of liquidators seem to prefer a Day 1 distribution with the director instructing the payments themselves. Is it really that controversial? Their argument is that they would have been appointed as liquidators already by then, so they can instruct the director to make the payments.
                  Re opening a new bank account shortly prior to liquidation...I don't know. It may be quite a lot of faff, and possibly the "new" bank may not be best pleased!

                  Re the final point, that's a bit different to what I think was being talked about above (at least by me!). I think what you're talking about is you transfer money from your company bank account to your own personal bank account, so it doesn't go via the liquidator. This certainly reduces the risk in terms of funds going astray (eg either nasty typo muck up or "liquidator" is actually a scammer).

                  I'm sure we did consider this option some time ago, and decided against it...though I can't 100% recall why. I think there was some nervousness over the legality of it with the timing. Ie either you're doing the transfer shortly before liquidator appointment, in which case you're fine to do so (you still control the company), but is it really a distribution from the liquidation...or you're doing it shortly after, in which case you shouldn't be able to and only are able to due to delays for banks to find out about the liquidation. Being honest I can't imagine HMRC ever challenging the point, but it seems more proper that funds actually go via the liquidator to make it abundantly clear that it was part of the liquidation.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Maslins View Post
                    Re opening a new bank account shortly prior to liquidation...I don't know. It may be quite a lot of faff, and possibly the "new" bank may not be best pleased!

                    Re the final point, that's a bit different to what I think was being talked about above (at least by me!). I think what you're talking about is you transfer money from your company bank account to your own personal bank account, so it doesn't go via the liquidator. This certainly reduces the risk in terms of funds going astray (eg either nasty typo muck up or "liquidator" is actually a scammer).

                    I'm sure we did consider this option some time ago, and decided against it...though I can't 100% recall why. I think there was some nervousness over the legality of it with the timing. Ie either you're doing the transfer shortly before liquidator appointment, in which case you're fine to do so (you still control the company), but is it really a distribution from the liquidation...or you're doing it shortly after, in which case you shouldn't be able to and only are able to due to delays for banks to find out about the liquidation. Being honest I can't imagine HMRC ever challenging the point, but it seems more proper that funds actually go via the liquidator to make it abundantly clear that it was part of the liquidation.
                    It was this I think:
                    https://www.contractoruk.com/forums/...ght=mvl+specie

                    and it was a genuine concern due to HMRC's usual ambiguity and desperation.

                    But HMRC have since clarified the ruling as per:
                    https://www.contractoruk.com/forums/...ght=mvl+specie

                    A lot of contractors (and other businesses) are keen to liquidate and get funds -or at least confirmed distributed dates- this tax year due to government taking the p1ss with their rumblings on CGT. I really don't expect BADR to be impacted, and neither does my accountant, but any increase in CGT will create a huge difference between CG rates and the 10% BADR rate. I can't imagine any business owner risking a life's worth of savings on the risk that HMRC might at a whim increase the BADR rate or remove the allowance altogether.

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