Banks are supposed to provide doorstep banking to senior citizens and differently abled persons, such as pick up and delivery of cash against withdrawal, delivery of demand drafts, submission of KYC documents and life certificates.
For senior citizens and individuals with disabilities, it often becomes difficult to visit banks or ATMs for their banking requirements. Time and again it has been reported that bank employees do not encourage such people and turn them away instead of helping them avail services. Hence, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) advised banks to provide separate basic banking facilities especially for senior citizens and individuals with disabilities. Such as delivery of cash against withdrawal from the account, pick up of cash and instruments against receipt, delivery of demand drafts, submission of KYC documents and life certificates at the residence of such customers.
Most people in this category, however, are not aware of these facilities. Find out what all facilities you can avail from banks concerning senior citizens and differently-abled persons:
According to the RBI notification, separately for senior citizens and differently-abled people, banks should provide a dedicated counter which provides priority to people who are differently-abled or infirm persons (having medically certified chronic illness or disability, including visually impaired people) and senior citizens.
Auto conversion of account status
Banks should convert a fully KYC-compliant account automatically into a senior citizen account based on the customer’s date of birth mentioned in the bank’s records. Even as of now some banks do not automatically convert even fully KYC-compliant accounts into senior citizen accounts.
Cheque Book Facility
Free of cost a minimum 25 cheque leaves every year are to be provided by banks, in a savings bank account, if requested. Banks are to issue cheque books to customers through a requisition slip, whenever a request is received. Especially in the case of senior citizens and differently-abled persons for getting a cheque book, banks should not insist on the physical presence of the customer.
Submitting Life Certificate
As per the guidelines issued by the Department of Government and Bank Accounts, under the Jeevan Praman scheme, along with the facility of Digital Life Certificate, physical life certificate form can also be submitted at any branch by pensioners of the bank. Hence, a customer can submit their life certificate in any branch, including a non-home branch, of the pension paying bank. Bank employees cannot deny accepting the form and the same should be updated promptly in CBS by the receiving branch.
Additional Facilities to visually impaired customers
According to RBI notifications, banks are to extend special facilities to sick, old and incapacitated customers. Accounts can also be operated through identification of thumb or toe impression or mark by two independent witnesses. An authorized person can also withdraw the amount on behalf of such customers.
Ease of filing Form 15G/H
Banks are to provide Form 15G/H once in a year, preferably in April, to senior citizens and differently-abled persons. They can then submit the same, within the stipulated time, where applicable.
The RBI had asked banks to set up Grievance Redressal internally for redressing complaints about services rendered. The designated officer is also required to ensure that the grievances of customers are redressed promptly.
Hence, senior citizen or differently-abled person can approach the designated Grievance Redressal officer of the bank with their complaint. If no reply is received within 30 days or the customer is not satisfied with the bank’s reply or the bank rejects the complaint, one can escalate the matter by approaching the Banking Ombudsman.