[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Wednesday, 15 March 2006, 18:30 GMT
Accountant sues bank over charges
Brian Mullen
Mr Mullen racked up many of the fines as a student
An accountant sued his bank over its overdraft charges and won the right to send bailiffs round to his local branch to recover the cash.

Brian Mullen, 29, from Manchester, took Lloyds TSB to the county court over the fines, claiming almost 2,000 of charges were illegal.

The bank failed to challenge Mr Mullen's claim in time and he won the action by default on 14 February.

A Lloyds TSB spokeswoman said it would not appeal and had returned the money.

'Default judgment'

After the bank failed to pay him the outstanding balance, he was given the further power to order bailiffs round to his neighbourhood branch in Reddish, Stockport, to seize their assets.

Mr Mullen racked up many of the fines while he was a student but got tired of receiving fines of 30 after direct debits and standing orders took him above his overdraft limit.

He filed the lawsuit against the firm, complaining the charges were illegal because they were worth more than the cost to the bank of Mr Mullen exceeding his overdraft and were also a penalty charge.

The spokeswoman for Lloyds TSB said: "In the normal course of action we would and do deal with any queries as and when they arise.

"Unfortunately Mr Mullen's claim wasn't picked up as it should have been and as a result he obtained a default judgment against us.

"We believe our charges are transparent and fair, and to say these charges are unlawful is inaccurate."

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific