What can I do after bank account was blocked and late payments recorded on a few accounts?

Dear James,

NatWest blocked my son's current account without any warning. It is now unblocked but four direct debits have not been paid. My son has received letters from the relevant credit card companies advising him he has to pay a fee. He has been building up a clean credit score to take out a mortgage but now he will have four late payments registered against him. Is there anything he can do to stop this happening to his credit score? He has also incurred charges from these four companies and also been charged by NatWest! I would appreciate your advice?

Vanessa, Christchurch

Dear Vanessa,

It sounds like this has caused a bit of trouble, but the first thing to do is make sure any payments to the credit cards are paid as soon as possible. Then check with each company directly to discuss whether they are intending to register late payments with the credit reference agencies.

The next thing to do is to get your son to look at his credit report, as this will reveal exactly what’s been recorded. Make sure you also keep an eye out for any other credit accounts that are paid by regularly direct debit, like a mobile phone contract.

If the account was blocked in error or you feel this shouldn’t have happened then you need to take this up directly with the bank. If your son wasn’t at fault for this and the bank can confirm this in writing, you can then send this to any organisations affected for them to consider. While firms have agreed to share factual repayment information with each other through the credit reference agencies, they should also take account of any mitigating circumstances beyond the customer’s control.

Finally, if late payments are recorded and cannot be removed, your son can consider adding a Notice of Correction to his credit report to explain what happened. Future lenders will see this and should take it into consideration. (January 2018)

James
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