The Banking Ombudsman recently dismissed a complaint about a bank requiring information regarding a joint bank account in order to approve a loan application.

The complainant had applied for a loan with her bank in order to pay off various debts that she owed. The loan application was in her name only.

When assessing whether the bank could grant the loan it requested information from the complainant regarding the joint bank account she had with her partner. The complainant refused, claiming that the bank should only be concerned with her finances as the loan was in her name.

The bank declined the complainant’s loan application. The complainant then made a complaint to the Ombudsman, arguing that the bank should not have asked for the information regarding the joint bank account.

While reviewing the complaint the Ombudsman looked at what is considered by a bank when approving or declining a loan application.

The bank must consider information regarding an applicant’s financial position in order to ensure that they will not face any financial hardship while they are paying off the loan. This requires looking into an applicant’s income and expenses, usually by assessing various bank statements.

The complainant relied on the joint bank account with her partner to pay for expenses such as housing, transport and utilities. The bank was therefore required to consider that account in order to determine the complainant’s financial position.

The Ombudsman decided that it was therefore reasonable for the bank to require information regarding the joint bank account. The complainant’s claim was dismissed.

It is important to be aware of your rights and obligations regarding your finances. If you are confused about these obligations, it pays to seek advice from a professional with experience in the area.


Leading law firms committed to helping clients cost-effectively will have a range of fixed-price Initial Consultations to suit most people’s needs in quickly learning what their options are.  At Rainey Collins we have an experienced team who can answer your questions and put you on the right track.

Alan Knowsley and Hunter Flanagan-Connors