RBI Guidelines for Doorstep Banking- 21st February 2007
Banks can offer through own employees and Agents the banking services like pick up of cash, instruments and delivery of cash and demand drafts to Corporate Customers/ Government Departments/ PSUs/ Individual Customers at their doorstep.
In order to ensure transparency in respect of the rights and obligations of customers, uniformity in approach and to clearly delineate the risks involved, RBI has laid down general principles and broad parameters to be followed by banks while offering "doorstep" services to their customers, Accordingly, banks may prepare a scheme for offering "doorstep" banking services to their customers, with the approval of their Boards, in accordance with the guidelines provided below-
Detailed Guidelines for Doorstep Banking
1. Services to be offered
Banks can offer the following banking services to their customers at their doorstep: -
(a) Corporate Customers/ Government Departments/ PSUs etc.
(i) Pick up of cash
(ii) Pick up of instruments
(iii)Delivery of cash against cheques received at the counter
(iv) Delivery of demand drafts
(b)Individual Customers/Natural persons:
(i)Pick up of cash
(ii) Pick up of instruments
(iii) Delivery of demand drafts
2. Modalities of Delivery
(a)Through own employees
(b) Through Agents
Where banks engage the services of Agents for delivery of services, it should be ensured that the policy approved by the Board lays down the broad principles for selection of Agents and payment of fee/commission etc. Banks may refer to the guidelines on Managing Risks and Code of Conduct in Outsourcing of Financial Services by banks issued on November 3, 2006 and ensure that the principles enumerated therein are complied with while offering Doorstep Banking services.
3. Delivery process
(i) Cash collected from the customer should be acknowledged by issuing a receipt on behalf of the bank;
(ii)Cash collected from the customer should be credited to the customer’s account on the same day or next working day, depending on the time of collection;
(iii) The customer should be informed of the date of credit by issuing a suitable advice.
(iv) Delivery of demand draft should be done by debit to the account on the basis of requisition in writing/ cheque received and not against cash or instruments collected at the doorstep;
(v) Cash delivery services may be offered to the corporate clients/PSUs/departments of Central and State Governments against receipt of cheque only at the branch and not against telephonic request. No such facility, however, shall be made available to individual customers;
4. Risk Management
It may be ensured that the agreement entered into with the customer does not entail any legal or financial liability on the bank for failure to offer doorstep services under circumstances beyond its control. The services should be seen as a mere extension of banking services offered at the branch and the liability of the bank should be the same as if the transactions were conducted at the branch. The agreement should not provide any right to the customer to claim the services at his doorstep.
Charges, if any, to be levied on the customer for doorstep services should be incorporated in the policy approved by the Board and should form part of the agreement entered into with the customer. The charges should be prominently indicated on brochures offering doorstep services.
6. Other conditions
(i) Doorstep services should be offered to only those customers in whose case proper KYC procedures, as laid down in RBI guidelines dated November 29, 2004 and subsequent circulars on the subject have been followed;
(ii) The services should be offered at either the residence or office of the customer, the address of which should be clearly and explicitly mentioned in the agreement.
(iii) The agreement/ contract with the customer shall clearly specify that the bank will be responsible for the acts of omission and commission of its ‘agent’.
(iv) The "Scheme" should not be restricted to any particular client/customer or class of customers.
(v) Banks may keep in view the restrictions imposed by Section 10 (1) (b) (ii) (b) of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949, while making payments for the services outsourced.
7. Redressal of Grievance
a) Banks should constitute an appropriate Grievance Redressal Machinery internally for redressing complaints about services rendered by its ‘agents’. The name and telephone number of the designated Grievance Redressal officer of the ‘bank’ should be made available to the customers including on the bank’s website. The designated officer should ensure that genuine grievances of customers are redressed promptly.
b) If a customer feels that his complaint has not been satisfactorily addressed, he will have the option to approach the Office of the concerned Banking Ombudsman for redressal of his grievance/s.
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