Aug 30, 2014

Complain to RBI Ombudsman HDFC Bank's - Unethical Charges and Hidden Deductions

HDFC Bank's Statement of Charges is one of the most confusing in the world. It was crafted by highly paid professionals who research on weakness of human mind. This blog post will tell you how to avoid common pitfalls.

HDFC bank/card unlike other banks don't offer any Toll Free number to contact them! However in all their mails they mention about customer satisfaction.  Here are some of the techniques they employ. I recommend to buy shares of HDFC bank if you ever got tricked by them to compensate for your loss. The more money they extract the more will be their Quarterly profit numbers, the more will the stock price rise.

Delayed Deduction Tactics

HDFC bank build their customer base by roping in corporate/salary account holders. If you switch job and forget about your account and your Average Balance fall below Rs.10000,  HDFC will charge you every quarter without giving you any SMS/Email. The only clue you will get is a narration in your Bank statement which is not self explanatory. By the time you learn about this after calling customer care (not toll free!!!) you might have already entered the next quarter. Another interesting fact is this is a monthly charge but the sytem will deduct it only after a quarter is over. Hence instead of losing 250Rs+service tax you will lose 750+service tax. + more Rs.+tax
Solution: Close account or watch it with care. To get refund of Rs.750+tax,  file a complaint online to the bank via RBI ombudsman and HDFC might reverse it. Click here for that and select Option 2. State the reason that the charges were deducted without notifying properly and not in a transparent manner.

Free today ;  Paid service tomorrow.

HDFC bank/card initially give free services and then make them chargable. To enable a service like "Mobile alerts/InstaAlerts"  you just need to click your mouse but to cancel that you have to visit the branch during banking hours and give a written request!!! Don't think this is by chance it is by design.  They also offer free Demat account which will be chargable after one year. People tend to forget to cancel this before one year gets over, some never use it. Some agents mention that it is free for ever. Never fall for these traps. Rs.842.70 is usually deducted for this.
Solution : Don't take any free services. Read your account statements regulalry . To get refund file a complaint online to the bank via RBI ombudsman and HDFC will reverse it. Click here for that and select Option 2. State the reason that the new charge was not notified to you.

Secret Deduction Technique

The charges  will be deducted by the system only after a quarter is over most of the time even if the service charge is stated monthly. The narration won't be clear in your account statements. In order to understand the meaning you have to call a paid Customer Care with agents equally reluctant to file a complaint. Even for small offers they send email but for these they never alert us.
Solution:  To get refund file a complaint online to the bank via RBI ombudsman and HDFC will reverse it. Click here for that and select Option 2. State the reason that the new charge was not notified to you and that deduction happened in an opaque manner.

Allergy to Currency and Cheque

HDFC Bank has limits how many transaction your or third party could do at their branches. The policy of the bank is to keep the branches empty as much as possible, avoid touching currency and cheque leaves as much as possible. They hate humans and want everything to happen via electronic form.

eg. Third Party Cash Transaction Charges and Limits at branches are as follows:
For amount of up to Rs. 50,000 per transaction charge of Rs. 112 applies Amounts over Rs. 50,000 are not allowed. This means even if you are giving a bearer cheques of Rs.50000 for someone for their service, you will be charged Rs.112/-, according to HDFC it is a cash cheque and hence a cash transaction. This defeats the whole advantage of cheques compared to NEFT transaction.
If you put Rs.100 in an account of your friend at HDFC by visiting a branch, HDFC will charge Rs.112 from your friend. Sounds ridiclous? This is not by chance but by design. This could make his balance go down below the 10000 Rs. That in turn will incur quarterly charges of Rs.750 every quarter. :)

Another example is
Savings account users can only perform 5 transaction per month in a branch(including home branch) (including deposit and withdrawal), from 6th one you need to pay Rs.112/-. Will any human keep track of the count?

"Cash transactions (Cash deposits & withdrawals) by self at  Non­home branches" - Above Rs. 49,999/­  pay Rs 5 per 1,000­ on the full amount (plus taxes).
No wonder all the branches are empty most of the time.

Solution : If you were charged Rs.112/- complain to RBI ombudsman online and you will get the amount back. Click here for that and select Option 2.  Just mention that the Statement of Charges were not clear on this. From next time use some other bank which respect you.

HDFC Bank generates more profit with less sales

See salary of HDFC MD Aditya Puri. Why do you think he is paid this much? To employ people who could make tricky/confusing charges and rob in a computerized manner.

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