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Your money is protected by the FSCS - find out more here
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Opening your account

If you've got a question about opening your account, we've put some useful information all in one place to help.

Applying for a new account

How do I apply for an account?

Once you have chosen the account that you would like to apply for, you'll usually be able to open it online. Simply select the account you would like from our open accounts range and you'll be able to read more information about the account before applying. You may need your National Insurance number which you can find on your payslip, pension statement or by contacting HMRC and your existing bank or building society account details as you may need to nominate an account to send withdrawals and interest to.

If you already use our Online Services, login and apply. We'll use your existing details and usually be able to open your new account straightaway.

If you'd prefer to speak to and open an account with one of our specialists, contact us or visit one of our branches.

What identification documents do I need to provide?

We need to confirm the identity of everyone who applies for an account with us. We do this to protect against identity fraud and to comply with money laundering regulations.

There's more information about what we may need you to give us here: Identification.

Where do I send my completed application?

If you're applying by form instead, fill in and sign the application form, then send it with your identification (if required) to:

FREEPOST CBS CUSTOMER SERVICES

It's important that you write the address all in uppercase as above.

You don't need to use a stamp. Royal Mail delivers Freepost as Second Class mail.

If you prefer not to send your ID documents in the mail (or get certified copies where applicable), you can also bring your form and ID into any of our branches - we'll verify your ID and in many cases, we can open your account straightaway.

Who do I make a deposit cheque out to and where do I send it?

If you're paying in by cheque, make it payable to the account holder and next to the name, write the account number you're paying into. Cheques should be crossed 'Account Payee' (many already have this printed on them). You don't need a paying-in slip. Then post your cheque to:

FREEPOST CBS CUSTOMER SERVICES

It's important that you write the address all in uppercase as above.

You don't need to use a stamp. Royal Mail delivers Freepost as Second Class mail.

How long will it take for my account to be opened?

For applications online we would usually be able to open your new account on the same day.

As soon as we've opened your account, we'll let you know your new account number and the details of your new account.

How do I open an account under a Power of Attorney?

You can operate/open a Coventry account while under a Power of Attorney - it depends on:

  • The type of attorney document
  • The restrictions in that document
  • The type of account you're applying for

To open or start managing an existing account under a Power of Attorney, contact us or visit one of our branches.

Can I open a Coventry account if I live abroad?

You must be resident in the UK for tax purposes at the time you open your account(s). If you hold accounts with us and then later move overseas you don't have to close your account(s).

What if I change my mind about my new Coventry account?

If you open an account and then decide it's not right for you, you have 14 days to close the account without charge.

To do this, come into any branch, call us on 0800 121 8899 or write to us at: Head Office, Economic House, PO Box 9, High Street, Coventry CV1 5QN. You can also close some savings accounts in Online Services.

Interest information

Can I receive interest without tax taken off?

To check if you're eligible to receive interest on your savings without tax taken off, visit the HMRC website at hmrc.gov.uk Opens new website in another window. If you need any advice about tax, contact HMRC or your local tax office: hmrc.gov.uk/contactus Opens new website in another window.

How do I register to claim tax-free interest on my savings?

To receive interest on your savings without tax being deducted please complete a form R85 and post it to us. Download the HMRC form R85 (PDF 533KB) Opens in a new window.

You can use this form to register up to two Coventry accounts at a time. If you want to register more accounts, we'll need you to fill in another form. The form only applies to a single customer so, if you want to register a joint account holder to receive interest without tax taken off, they'll need to fill in a separate form and send it to us.

Send your completed form(s) to:

FREEPOST CBS CUSTOMER SERVICES

It's important that you write the address all in uppercase as above.

You don't need to use a stamp. Royal Mail delivers Freepost as Second Class mail.

Where can I get a 'Form R85' from?

Download form R85 (PDF 536KB) Opens in a new window

You'll need to have Adobe Reader installed on your computer. If you don't already have this installed, you can download it free of charge from Adobe's website Opens new website in another window.

Then fill in the form and post it to us at the address shown on the form.

You can also request a form by calling us on 0800 121 8899 or visiting your local branch.

Your security

How can I register for Online Services?

If you would like to manage your Coventry accounts online, register online with your account number and password. Alternatively, call 0800 121 8899 and ask us to set up access to Online Services for you.

If you applied for an online account, we automatically set up access to Online Services for you as soon as we've opened your account and send you everything you need to login through the post.

Why haven't I received confirmation that my password has been set up?

For security reasons, we don't send confirmation that we've set up your password. Before you can log in with your password, please allow four working days from the date you posted your password form to us. We usually set up passwords on the day we receive your form.

Identification

We need proof of your name and address to open a new account. This is a fraud prevention measure and also allows us to comply with money laundering regulations.

We may carry out an electronic check to confirm your identity. If we need additional identification (ID), we'll let you know what we need, and we'd need to see this ID before we open your account.

Find out more

ISAs - Tax-free^ savings

With an Individual Savings Account (ISA), all the interest you earn is tax-free^. Find out more about how much you can save in a cash ISA and make the most of your tax-free^ savings allowance.

Find out more

Members rights

Members rights

When you open your first investment share account with us you automatically become a member of the Society. Membership gives you certain rights, like voting on business matters and raising questions at our Annual General Meeting.

To be entitled to vote, on the voting date you must be age 18 years or over and have total savings balances of at least £100 (at the previous 31 December). For joint account holders only the first named account holder can vote, subject to the same criteria set out above. As you can choose the order in which names appear on your account, it makes sense to consider this before you open your account. Every named account holder of a joint account can attend the AGM. Membership rights are fully explained in the Rules.

General Investment Terms & Conditions

Read more about our General investment Terms and Conditions below:

General Investment Terms and Conditions (PDF 3MB)

This important legal document applies to all Coventry Building Society savings and current accounts (except Offset Savings accounts and Annual Voluntary Contribution account).

Important information

10% tax rebate

Interest paid on savings accounts normally have 20% income tax taken off before it is paid. If you are on a low income you may qualify to pay some tax at 10% and so be able to claim a tax rebate from HM Revenue and Customs.

How do I find out if I am eligible?

To find out if you are eligible, please see the information on the HMRC website Opens new website in another window.

If I am eligible, how can I claim my tax rebate?

If you think you've paid too much tax on your savings interest you may be able to claim it back. To do this you'll need to fill in a R40 Tax Repayment Form. You'll have to do this for each year you think you paid too much tax.

For information about timings and to download the form, please visit the HMRC website Opens new website in another window.

Compensation scheme

We are covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). The FSCS can pay compensation to depositors if a building society is unable to meet its financial obligations. Most depositors - including most individuals and small businesses - are covered by the scheme.

In respect of deposits, an eligible depositor is entitled to claim up to £85,000. For joint accounts each account holder is treated as having a claim in respect of their share so, for a joint account held by two eligible depositors, the maximum amount that could be claimed would be £85,000 each (making a total of £170,000). The £85,000 limit relates to the combined amount in all the eligible depositor's accounts with the building society, including their share of any joint account, and not to each separate account.

For further information about the compensation provided by the FSCS (including the amounts covered and eligibility to claim) please ask at your local branch or call us on 0800 121 8899, refer to the FSCS website www.FSCS.org.uk Opens new website in another window or call the FSCS on 0800 678 1100. Please note only compensation related queries should be directed to the FSCS.

Depositors not covered by the scheme include:

  • Large companies, partnerships or mutual associations
  • Local, provincial or municipal authorities
  • Credit institutions or overseas financial services institutions
  • Operators or trustees of a collective investment scheme
  • Pension and retirement funds or trustees of such a fund
  • Supranational institutions
  • Government, or central administrative authorities
  • Persons whose claim arises from transactions relating to conviction they have received for money laundering

Further details of exclusions from FSCS cover can be found on the Financial Conduct Authority Opens new website in another window website.

Bank charges ruling

Seven banks and a building society were engaged in a High Court test case with the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) to decide the legality of unauthorised overdraft charges.

The Court issued its judgement on the first stage of the test case on 24 April 2008. Two main points were covered in this initial judgement. Firstly, it allowed the OFT to assess the banks' current terms and conditions for fairness under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contract Regulations (1999). Secondly, the judge found that none of the banks' current terms and conditions were capable of being a penalty under common law - and that they were written in broadly understandable language.

In May 2008 the judge granted the banks permission to appeal his decision on whether the terms could be assessed for fairness. The banks decided to do so and the outcome of this appeal was announced in February 2009. The Court of Appeal held that the banks' charges could be assessed for fairness by the OFT, but granted the banks permission to appeal this decision to the Supreme Court.

On 25 November 2009 the Supreme Court announced that the charges in question were not assessable for fairness under Regulation 6 of the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations (1999). This means the banks have won their appeal and the test case has concluded.

The Supreme Court have decided it is not necessary to make any reference to the European Court of Justice.

As previously agreed with the Financial Ombudsman Service and the Financial Services Authority, customer complaints relating to unauthorised overdraft charges remained on hold for the duration of the test case. As the test case has now concluded, the Financial Services Authority has agreed that these complaints should no longer remain on hold.

Please refer to the British Bankers' Association (BBA) Opens new website in another window or the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) Opens new website in another window websites for further information.

Please note: the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) took over the OFT's responsibility for consumer credit regulation from 1 April 2014.

What is happening to customer complaints about unauthorised overdraft charges?

If you have a new complaint about unauthorised overdraft charges it will be handled under our standard complaints process. We have a responsibility to take account of individual circumstances, so if you feel you are experiencing serious financial difficulties please write to us at the following address:

Customer Relations Department, PO Box 600, Binley, Coventry, CV3 9YR.

Can I complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service about my bank charges?

Yes, you can refer your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) providing you have exhausted the Society's internal complaints procedure.

Where can I find out more?

You can contact us by calling us on 0800 121 8899.

Alternatively, you can find more information through the following links:

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA): www.fca.org.uk Opens new website in another window

The Financial Ombudsman Service: www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk Opens new website in another window

Charges

For services outside the normal operation of your account we make certain charges to cover the administration costs involved. We will let you know the charge for any other service before we provide that service to you. You can also check current charges with your local branch or by contacting us.

Current charges (effective 14 May 2015)

Reason for charge Amount of charge
Insufficient funds charge

We apply this charge if you have insufficient available funds to pay a Direct Debit, standing order or one-off electronic payment.

£8 up to and including 13 May 2015

£5 from 14 May 2015

Withdrawals from LINK cash machines Free
Monthly authorised overdraft usage fee

This fee only applies to Coventry First accounts. We charge this fee if your account exceeds your interest free overdraft but remains within your authorised overdraft limit.

£5
Monthly unauthorised overdraft usage fee

This fee only applies to Coventry First accounts. We charge this fee if your account exceeds your authorised overdraft limit. Have a look here for some examples of when we charge this fee.

£25 up to and including 13 May 2015

£10 from 14 May 2015

Charge for making withdrawals from Visa and PLUS cash machines abroad 2% of sterling transaction value
We convert the amount of the withdrawal to pounds sterling on the date we take it out of your account at the wholesale rate of exchange applied by Visa. We then charge 2% of the sterling transaction value.
Charge for Debit Card purchases abroad 2% of sterling transaction value
We convert the amount of the transaction to pounds sterling on the date we take it out of your account at the wholesale rate of exchange applied by Visa. We then charge 2% of the sterling transaction value.

Where charges are made for returned cheques, unpaid standing orders and Direct Debits, they will appear automatically in your passbook or statement. We will deduct the full amount of the charge from your account even if there are insufficient funds in your account to cover this charge. This may result in your account becoming overdrawn. All account holders will be responsible for any debt incurred in this way, the full amount of which must be repaid to the Society.

If we increase any of our charges we will notify you at least 2 months before the change comes into effect. Where we make a charge as a result of our error, we will of course cancel, waive or refund the charge.

Dormant bank accounts

Across the UK a large number of customers have savings accounts with various banks or building societies that they may have forgotten about.

We're working with the Building Societies Association and British Bankers' Association as part of an industry wide initiative to help customers find their lost accounts. So if you think you have old, lost or forgotten savings, we may be able to help you find them.

If you are searching for an account on behalf of a deceased or incapacitated person, you will need to be legally empowered to do so.

To begin your search, all you need to do is either:

  • Go to www.mylostaccount.org.uk Opens new website in another window and complete the Reclaim Funds online process. This website can be used to search for lost accounts at any bank, building society or national savings account.
  • Or alternatively, if it is a lost Coventry account, come into one of our branches or call us and ask a member of staff for a Reclaim Funds form.
  • Any money in these accounts will always belong to the account holder or their estate, no matter how many years pass.

Please note that reclaiming funds may change your tax status, contact HMRC for further information.

Charitable Assignment Scheme

On 3rd November 1998, we introduced a new condition as part of the declaration for new customers opening savings accounts. We introduced this condition to avoid disruption to our normal business caused by the actions of speculators whose main objective in opening accounts is to receive windfall conversion payments.

Every new customer opening an account that provides membership of the Society, must agree to assign any windfall conversion benefits to which they may become entitled, to the Coventry Building Society Charitable Foundation for a period of five years from the date the account is opened.

The Coventry Building Society Charitable Foundation, which was established in 1998, is a registered charity, a majority of whose trustees are independent of Coventry Building Society. It provides financial assistance in the form of grants to registered charities operating within the area served by our branch network.

If you were an existing member on 2nd November 1998, this condition does not apply to any new accounts you open after this date (as long as you remain a member).

^ISAs and junior ISAs are a savings scheme initiated by the Government and, as such, are subject to change by them. For example, the favourable tax treatment may not be maintained. Interest on ISAs is paid tax-free, that is gross with no tax deducted. To open a cash ISA, you must be 16 or over and a resident in the UK. Junior ISAs are for children under 18. To find out more, visit www.gov.uk/individual-savings-accountsOpens new website in another window or www.gov.uk/junior-individual-savings-accountsOpens new website in another window

Coventry Building Society is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority (firm reference number 150892 www.fca.org.uk Opens new website in another window). This site is intended for UK residents only. Coventry Building Society. Registered Office: Economic House, PO Box 9, High Street, Coventry CV1 5QN.

Our Customer Service Centre is open Monday to Friday 8am-8pm, Saturday 9am-5pm, Sunday 10am-4pm.

Calls to 0800 numbers are free when made from the UK. You may be charged for calls to all other numbers, please contact your service provider for further details. We may monitor, record, store and use telephone calls to help improve our service and as a record of our conversation.