Banks leave customers in “dire poverty” by transferring cash between accounts without permission

Banks have been criticised for taking cash out of customer current accounts to pay off overdrawn credit card accounts without their permission. The practice, known as 'setting off', is completely legal and allows banks to transfer cash between accounts that belong to the same person in order to repay their debts as long as they inform them of the changes afterwards. This can help customers by reducing interest charges on unarranged overdrafts or arrears on a loan or mortgage.