Temporary Freeze of Bank accounts

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Has anybody any thoughts about the wisdom of instructing one's bank to freeze a personal/business account for the immediate period just before & after the Millenium so as to avoid any hassles??

I spoke with my bank manager(NatWest) today re a small business bank loan and was told that they were only concerned with questioning new loan applicants or existing large loan holders.I guess that's us off the hook until there is quote"a change of policy".I was also told that if there were any power cuts the banks doors would be closed because of security reasons.Nice one!!

-- Chris Griffen (griffen@globalnet.co.uk), March 10, 1999


Bank doors have to be shut if power is off. Ya know, money in the vaults, no alarms, no telecom . . . makes it rather an open invitation for robbery.

And by "freezing" the account, do you mean simply to suspend processing transactions for the few minutes before, during and after midnight 12/31/99? Not sure what that would accomplish. Most potential problems could not be avoided that way. Besides, the vast majority of bank accounts will likely not be processing anything at midnight anyway. Since most banks close their doors early on New Year's Eve, most processing will be done that night before the cross over. Employees want to get to the parties too (or the shelters as the case may be).

-- David (David@BankPacman.com), March 10, 1999.

Given a panic demand for currency, your account will be frozen by edict. I do not know of any way to voluntarily freeze your account other than by closing it before any problem arises that troubles you.

-- Watchful (seethesea@msn.com), March 10, 1999.

Legally, your account is titled "John Doe" or "John and Mary Doe" or any other number of ways. It's your money. We cannot prevent you from accessing your funds unless (1) garnishment (2) death of one of the owners (3) non-payment of loan at same bank (we could use funds in your checking to satisfy a bad debt). That's really about it. Unless of course you're overdrawn. Banks may however, opt to offer you funds from your account in a guaranteed payment form other than cash (ie. cashier's check). You may want to ask your banker if the bank intends to place a maximum on cash withdrawals with the balance paid in other form. To be honest, we are considering a threshold of $10,000. Anything paid out to a customer over this amount may take the form of said check. (By the way, you all know that cash transactions greater than $10,000 MUST be reported by bank personnel to the IRS. Getting a cashier's check would avoid this reporting requirement - not that I'm helping you structure your activity or anything!) I guess your best bet is to ask your banker - and demand more than just the usual "we'll be fine" - I HATE THAT!

-- y2kproject coordinator (abank@smalltown.usa), March 11, 1999.

David - I've got a story that will validate Chris's concerns. My company is owned by a semi-major telecomm corp. The wireless phone billing system has had problems getting the bills straight during testing when the clock rolls from 12/31 to 1/1. However, when the system was shut down just prior to midnight and restarted right after, it worked like a charm.

Might be the (simple) answer for billing/accounting ssytems....??


-- Deano (deano@luvthebeach.com), March 11, 1999.

Deano, well now that's different than freezing an account and perhaps worth looking at. Maybe I just misunderstood Chris's concerns (if so, please accept my apology Chris). That's more of an operating system precaution if I understand it correctly. I read an article a few months back that said Microsoft is recommending that everyone have their PC's off during the cross over. I plan to apply that to my personal PC even though I tested it and it's been "certified" by the manufacturer, it certainly couldn't hurt.

-- David (David@BankPacman.com), March 11, 1999.

Thanks for all your replies.Should have said that we are thinking of instructing our bank to stop all movement on the account from say 20th Dec to 14th Jan...just in case account details get corrupted.That way hard copy of bank statement on 20th remains accurate.In the UK accounts can be frozen on request although this normally happens when the account holder dies.

We figure if we opt out, so to speak,of the system for the critical period,we shall not be borrowing trouble !

-- Chris (griffen@globalnet.co.uk), March 11, 1999.

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