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UOKiK checked whether cards for PLN 0 really cost nothing

UOKiK checked whether cards for PLN 0 really cost nothing

Dodano: 2018-02-20
Publikator: Office of Competition and Consumer Protection

UOKiK received complaints that banks charge fees for debit cards, even though in a given settlement period, a consumer made card payments at the required number or value of transactions. Due to these signals, UOKiK reviewed the practices of 18 banks, of which 13 caused concerns.

UOKiK challenged:

  • advertisements informing that debit cards are free if a consumer makes payments on a specified number or value of transactions in a given settlement period,
  • vague information on websites,
  • debit card fee charging model.

As it turned out, fees were cancelled if a purchase had been posted by the bank. “Posting a transaction is not synonymous to its execution; moreover, the consumer has no control on the time in which the operation is posted. As a result, when a consumer paid for their purchases with a card at the end of the month, the transaction was settled at the beginning of the next month. Thus they had to pay card handling fees”, says Marek Niechciał, the President of UOKiK.

Summary of UOKiK activities:

  • Five banks did not raise any doubts according to UOKiK: BGŻ, BPH, Deutsche Bank, Idea Bank, Pekao.
  • Six banks have voluntarily changed their practices as a result of UOKiK’s notification, i.e. without initiating proceedings: BZ WBK, EuroBank, Getin Noble Bank, ING Bank Śląski, Millennium Bank, Plus Bank.
  • UOKiK issued six decisions concerning: mBank, BOŚ Bank, Bank Pocztowy, Credit Agricole, PKO BP, T-Mobile Usługi Bankowe. Thes banks have committed to refund card fees to the consumers and to change the transaction settlement models. More details on the fee refund can be found in UOKiK’s decision.
  • One proceeding is in progress – against Alior Bank.

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