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Citizens Advice disappointed at Co-op's decision to withdraw basic bank accounts from undischarged bankrupts

Gillian Guy, Chief Executive at national charity Citizens Advice said:

"We're very disappointed that the Co-operative Bank has decided to stop offering basic bank accounts to people going through bankruptcy. This leaves only one bank - Barclays - willing to provide basic bank accounts to people in this situation.

"This market needs to be shared - all banks should have a responsibility to spread the risk and cater for clients who don't represent immediate profit.

"Not being able to open a bank account has very serious repercussions for people - it's much harder to process wages and benefit payments, pay in cheques and pay bills. Without a bank account, these basic everyday tasks can become huge and costly obstacles to overcome, particularly for people who are often already at a vulnerable point in their lives.

"Citizens Advice wants the Government and all banks to work together to find a sustainable solution that ensures everyone has access to this essential service."

Notes to editors

  1. The Citizens Advice service comprises a network of local bureaux, all of which are independent charities, and national charity Citizens Advice. Together we help people resolve their money, legal and other problems by providing information and advice and by influencing policymakers. For more information in England and Wales see citizensadvice.org.uk
  2. The advice provided by the Citizens Advice service is free, independent, confidential, and impartial, and available to everyone regardless of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, religion, age or nationality. For online advice and information see adviceguide.org.uk
  3. Citizens Advice Bureaux in England and Wales advised 2.1 million clients on 6.9 million problems from April 2011 to March 2012. For full 2011/2012 service statistics see: citizensadvice.org.uk/press_statistics
  4. Out of 22 national charities, the Citizens Advice service is ranked by the general public as being the most helpful, approachable, professional, informative, effective / cost effective, reputable and accountable. (nfpSynergy’s Brand Attributes survey, May 2010).
  5. Most Citizens Advice service staff are trained volunteers, working at around 3,300 service outlets across England and Wales.


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