Can ICICI Cards Division Unilaterally Deduct Money from Savings Account ?

ICICI Cards Deducting BalanceA reader of our Advisory Service reports his plight where the Card Issuing Bank has deducted money from his savings account to recover his dues on credit card and wants to know if the Bank can do it ? He Writes as follows,

I had a credit card # 4477478289029005 against which some payments were due close to 6500 I did not get any notification because I had left my then current address for higher studies now by 2011 the total due because of late payment become around 12000 later when I get a new job in 2011 I opened an account with ICICI so all my details (mobile no email address) everything was available with ICICI still without any intimation they deducted money Rs 12000 from my savings account in year 2014.

I have no problem ICICI taking or charging me penalty and taking rs. 12000 from my account because I was liable to pay that but I object and feel cheated when they have all my latest mail/mobile/address information still they deducted the money directly from my saving accounts without informing me and that too when I needed it the most and I had pre-plans to use that amount somewhere else this act of bank is not ethical at all their customer care representatives call us many times to sell off new credit card that time they have all my information but they don’t even call or mail when they have to take back 5 years old money, where were they all these 5 years? So I feel cheated because they didn’t inform me and took it directly from my account I claim of at least Rs 10000 as a compensation for all the inconvenience caused to me and the financial and personnel trauma which I faced.

CardBhai’s Response: Morally you may feel the bank is wrong, but legally they are correct. It is the onus of the Customer to inform the Bank about change in Address / Status. Also when you have opted for a Credit Card, you’d have signed on the form where the Credit Card account will be linked to your Savings / Current Account and you’d have signed authorizing the bank to debit balance from the respective account to pay off credit / debit card dues.

However, this system of unilateral debit needs improvement and further detailing form the RBI because Credit Cards division do not Debit all the amount at once even though the balance is available in savings account and they put the customer in debt trap with heavy APR Charges, Over the Limit Fees, etc.

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