TransferWise holds money since early January 2019

Hera

New Member
Hello,

I’ve been using TransferWise business account for a standard europeen company for over six months and the service has generally been good.
Then, they started sending a series of emails asking questions about payments I was receiving, and I replied to each one.
This continued through about 5-6 emails, each time asking for more information. I received an email that they’ve deactivated my account for reasons they cannot disclose. They asked me to email them my banking info so they can return the funds in my TW account back to my bank account (~EUR 7000). I responded with my bank details immediately, they answered "We are currently conducting additional due diligence check on your TransferWise account and this can take approximately 60 working days". Then I never heard from them again.
As of today, no refund has been performed by TransferWise. When I sends emails, they reply "we are on it, ss a regulated financial institution we have to carry out simple due diligence checks before we can proceed with such refund. I can assure you that our team is on this and should give you an update as soon as that is completed. " since January, simple due diligence checks!
Do you have any idea about ways to unblock the situation?
 

void

Trusted Member
Business Angel
Let's assume all is legit and situation as described. I'd try to "threaten" with contacting regulatory institution(s) regarding your case. Worked for me twice in similar situations and slightly bigger money.
 

Hera

New Member
Let's assume all is legit and situation as described. I'd try to "threaten" with contacting regulatory institution(s) regarding your case. Worked for me twice in similar situations and slightly bigger money.
Thank you for your reply. About Transferwise, we have to contact Financial Conduct Authority (UK) or the similar in Lithuania?
 

void

Trusted Member
Business Angel
Sorry I misled you a bit - my experience wasn't with TW and I don't know if it will help here. I'd just send a more aggressive email and wait a day or two, you should have reasonable expectations though. Initiating actual dispute is not something I have experience with.
 

Admin

Forum Moderator
Staff member
"We are currently conducting additional due diligence check on your TransferWise account and this can take approximately 60 working days". Then I never heard from them again.
This is typically how it goes. They start with some standard e-mails you reply with all supporting documents and then nothing. I believe all banks and licensed financial institutions are under big presure and processes for each of such case terrible slow because it need to be foolproofed each time.
 

Elve

Building Trust
Entrepreneur
Hello Hera, I am in exactly the same situation and I am waiting for my refund (16k) since the beginning of May.

I have contacted the FCA and ombudsman uk and they advised me to wait the 60 business days before making a complaint.

But that is very worrying if you have not received anything since January, because the 60 business days of diligence have already passed for a long time.

Has anyone here been able to recover their money after the deactivation of the TW account?
 

alexundu

Member
Hello Hera, I am in exactly the same situation and I am waiting for my refund (16k) since the beginning of May.

I have contacted the FCA and ombudsman uk and they advised me to wait the 60 business days before making a complaint.

But that is very worrying if you have not received anything since January, because the 60 business days of diligence have already passed for a long time.

Has anyone here been able to recover their money after the deactivation of the TW account?
yep, they sent me money on other account in a few days
 

Bmw850

Trusted Member
Business Angel
Hello guys,
I had the same problem in the past for 17k euros. I have been refunded within 48 hours, it was almost one year ago from now.
But since i have heard less nice stories so i decided to close all my others set-up with them, it means i took out the money to prevent it. In my opinion ( just mine ) TW is not a scam but more and more similar cases are published on the web.
 

JohnSpain

Member
The challenge for all the e-money providers is that they rely on old school banks. When their bank partner question a transfer they need to freeze your funds and conduct their AML processes. 60 days sound a lot, but I guess this give an idea about how many transactions are questioned every day.... Add to this that the old school banks dont really like the business model of the e-money sector and we have a growing problem. This will only get worse.
 
Hello. I have more than 20K on hold there and I am waiting for their refund. How can i take legal action against them.
 

JohnSpain

Member
The best is probably to provide documentations for the funds. Be pro-active and send them anything that can document that the funds are 100% legal. For example if it was from a salary you could easily document this (it is probably not, but you get the idea). Might not help, but for banks its all about making sure they have their backs free, so they might take anything you can provide and at least return the funds.
 

Hera

New Member
For my situation, we have already provided documentation. There was nothing illegal, no complex corporation, no nominees, onshore european company. Fund in bordeless account came from the same company or standard european companies. Outgoing transfers were made to suppliers. Use case was very simple.
Moreover, TransferWise is very good in SEO to dissimulate real issues with them. But when you search in deeper, you find lot of similar cases, but you don't find the end of stories or used ways to recover funds.
 
I have provided documentation also and the company is eu also. How can we take legal action against transferwise? If we leave it like this they will release the funds whenever they want
 

Fajosst

New Member
Same situation. I really thought they were a reliable service. Be careful, the customer service is terrible, it takes a long time to respond.
 

xzars

Trusted Member
Business Angel
It's the end of TW as we know it. TransferWise has several underpinner banking partners around the world, and if paranoia from just one banking partner can get the entire account locked, including balances in other currencies, their service is unreliable trash, and will be even more so as they keep expanding globally. More partners = more account freeze risk
 

xzars

Trusted Member
Business Angel
Does anyone know any lawyer so we take legal action against this company?
I've been in the same situation with other banks before and have some empathy, but you're a little optimistic here.

They are based in London UK. Fees for finance lawyers start at 250£/hour. Not being overly informed with the details of 2019, but assume no less than 15,000£ in non-refundable legal fees. On top of that, some contingency (success) fees are due, a percentage of recovered funds. Even with your 15K as case deposit, you may have a hard time finding lawyers interested in your case if you go solo. However, if you can gather 10 other folks in the same situation as you, it's an option worth a consideration. Not an impossibility - looking at the replies piling in this thread.

If you're a UK resident, you may have another angle of attack. You can complain to FCA that their business practices are unfit for local market, and they do not respect consumer rights, failing to keep their own promises. This reputational risk in front of FCA could be enough to prompt action from TW. If you're not a UK resident, FCA will probably side with TransferWise and share the opinion that TW does the right thing by locking customer funds for what ever reason, for how ever long.
 

Bmw850

Trusted Member
Business Angel
As mentioned by @xzars the lawyer idea maybe a bit expensive and not relevant.
Maybe try to hit them on social network Facebook, Twitter etc.. sometimes it works
 

xzars

Trusted Member
Business Angel
Any other solution. I am an European citizen. Is there any solution at all or i just need to wait.
For what it's worth - www.fca.org.uk. They oversee TransferWise.

Before you get in contact with FCA, make your case as crisp as possible. Have a friend who works in anything laws-related read and refine your case. Make it sound like TransferWise butchered the Queen even if they only stepped on her dog's tail. Go in with an assumption that they do not care about you or your case, because you do not live in the UK. To an extent, this is true, and for that reason, you must deliver your arguments better than the typical fish n' chips eater - otherwise, you will get no traction from this overburdened institution.
 

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