FCA Issued Landmark Fine to Santander for Failing to Pass on Inheritances
The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has issued a £32.8m fine to Santander after it failed to pay £183m of inheritance to the beneficiaries of deceased customers.
The fine is the first of its kind to be issued by FCA for issues concerning poor handling of probate and bereavement. It found that, during a three-year period, Santander had failed to properly process their accounts and investments – affecting more than 40,000 deceased customers. This failure resulted in the bank holding on to deceased customer funds without alerting beneficiaries to their existence.
FCA highlighted that a lenders’ duty to treat customers fairly does not end when they die. Santander has since issued a statement that it has traced and compensated the majority of beneficiaries of those affected, and has changed its probate procedures.