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Citizens Advice disappointed at Co-op's decision to withdraw basic bank accounts from undischarged bankrupts

19 September 2012

Gillian Guy, Chief Executive at national charity Citizens Advice said:

"We're very disappointed that the Co-operative Bank has decided to stop offering basic bank accounts to people going through bankruptcy. This leaves only one bank - Barclays - willing to provide basic bank accounts to people in this situation.

"This market needs to be shared - all banks should have a responsibility to spread the risk and cater for clients who don't represent immediate profit.

"Not being able to open a bank account has very serious repercussions for people - it's much harder to process wages and benefit payments, pay in cheques and pay bills. Without a bank account, these basic everyday tasks can become huge and costly obstacles to overcome, particularly for people who are often already at a vulnerable point in their lives.

"Citizens Advice wants the Government and all banks to work together to find a sustainable solution that ensures everyone has access to this essential service."

Notes to editors:

  1. The Citizens Advice service comprises a network of local bureaux, all of which are independent charities, the Citizens Advice consumer service and national charity Citizens Advice. Together we help people resolve their money, legal and other problems by providing information and advice and by influencing policymakers. For more see the Citizens Advice website.
  2. The advice provided by the Citizens Advice service is free, independent, confidential, and impartial, and available to everyone regardless of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, religion, age or nationality.
  3. To find your local bureau in England and Wales, visit You can also get advice online at
  4. You can get consumer advice from the Citizens Advice consumer service on 03454 04 05 06 or 03454 04 05 05 for Welsh language speakers
  5. Citizens Advice Bureaux in England and Wales advised 2.3 million clients on 5.4 million problems from October 2013 to September 2014. For full 2013/2014  service statistics see our quarterly publication Advice trends
  6. Citizens Advice service staff are supported by more than 21,000 trained volunteers, working at over 3,000 service outlets across England and Wales.