info.LandsbankiAction.org.gg   30-Mar-2016: Liquidators' Update, see Deloitte site

Is your money safe? Don’t bank on it!

I am Guernsey, born and bred, and have worked extremely hard to try and live within my means and keep out of debt.

I opened my account with Cheshire Guernsey Limited quite a few years ago. Having had insurance companies which have changed their name several times over the course of their lives, I thought no more about it when I got this letter in 2006 saying that the bank was changing to Landsbanki Guernsey Limited. After all, it was a Guernsey company, run in Guernsey, regulated in Guernsey and paying tax to Guernsey, so no problem...?

I had been doing exactly what the States of Guernsey wanted, namely putting aside money for my old age so that I would not be a burden on any-body. I have gone without big holidays and new cars when so many people around me have had exactly those things. I have declared every penny of interest to the tax office, and because I have never withdrawn anything, may end up paying tax on interest that I will never receive!

When I discovered that the travel company XL had gone into administration and that their bankers were Landsbanki, I felt that it might be prudent to move my hard earned cash elsewhere so I put the notice on the account to close. Unfortunately, Landsbanki Guernsey went into administration half way through the notice period, and despite the fact that the bank knew that I wanted my money back it seems that I am back at the end of the queue.

On going to the first depositors’ meeting I was shocked by how many older Guernsey people were there,so worried as it seemed that the States had all but forgotten them. However by the end, it was obvious that there was a group of articulate, intelligent people who are doing so much on our behalf to try and fight for the return of all our monies, and for that I am truly grateful.

Just to make matters worse, the recent collapse of interest rates has only made matters worse for everyone who relies on their savings to top up their pension, as they are now having to eat into their capital.

It just appears so typical of the States to bring in a depositors’ protection scheme now after it is needed, though I believe one had been talked about years ago.

I am trying to think positively that eventually we will get our money back but at least I have a few more working years in which to put some money away (though it will take many years to make up what I might lose) – there are a lot that do not.

I urge all depositors to join the Action Group as they are working so hard and you will realise that you are not on your own.