better banking

Bank accounts

Account mandates

May 2016

An account mandate, also known as an account signing authority, sets out who can use an account, including who can access information about the account. 

Automatic Exchange of Information

Jun 2017

2 June 2017

New Zealand has signed up to an international agreement to share information with other tax authorities.  This is a government initiative, designed to make sure everyone pays the right amount of tax when they have interests in multiple countries.  

Children’s bank accounts

Jul 2017

Children don’t have unrestricted use of bank accounts. Nor are they free to open bank accounts on their own. To do that, they need an adult’s involvement. The role of adults (usually the parents) is to decide what type of account would be best for the child. They also decide who can have access to the account.

The rules governing who can operate an account are set out in a document called an account mandate (also known as an account signing authority). An account mandate spells out who has access to an account and how that access will work. Parents may decide they alone will have access to the account. Or they may decide to operate the account jointly with the child. Or they may choose to give the child (depending on age) sole access.

Closure of accounts

Mar 2016

A fundamental part of the relationship between a banking service provider and its customer is that either may end it at any time.

Dealing with a deceased customer’s bank accounts

Feb 2014

We sometimes receive complaints from relatives or associates of someone who has died, particularly in relation to disclosure of information about the deceased’s bank accounts, or the operation of the accounts.

Joint accounts and relationship breakdowns

Feb 2016

Typically, joint accounts are shared between couples, close relatives or business partners. They can be a very convenient way to manage shared funds. But, when a relationship between joint account holders breaks down, problems can arise.

Missing accounts

Mar 2016

Sometimes customers contact us because their bank is refusing to pay the credit balance on an old account the customer believes has never been closed or paid out.

Suspending (or freezing) accounts

Sep 2017

If you instruct your bank to make a payment, the bank is generally legally obliged to carry out your instructions. In some circumstances however, your bank can suspend an account and refuse your instructions.