HSBC France & Probate - BEWARE

If you have any accounts with HSBC France then BEWARE. If you are an executor of a will or an inheritor, you will receive no co-operation from this bank, nor will you see the money! Sounds far-fetched? It’s not – that’s exactly what has happened to us. After 100 days, 20+ communications by letter, by email, by telephone, and in person – we still do not know details of my mother’s accounts, whether they have been blocked, what interest was paid to those accounts before her death, what the balance of those accounts is, and we have not received a single communication about her private banking account. When you complain they just fob you off, they say they have passed it on to the relevant department and then you hear absolutely nothing. If you call the telephone number they give you for the “succession” department, nobody ever answers that number. The branch manager where she banked, Mme Le Roux at Mandelieu, doesn’t want to know and even M. François Essertel the Head of Private Banking doesn’t want to know. We’ve had to go to the AMF because it is pointless trying to communicate with them.
That is HSBC France’s idea of good customer service for bereaved families!

I didn’t think French succession could be handled by “executors” - I thought everything had to be done by a notaire.

Oh dear… sounds awful… during what must be a distressing time for all the family.

However, you do not say anything about the Notaire…who will be the person handling your Mother’s estate…

(After a death… everything goes into “cold-storage” while the Notaire puts together the facts of the matter…and in most cases, I doubt the Bank will issue any details except to the Notaire…)

If you do not know which Notaire… just visit a local one and discuss with him/her… there will be a way for any Notaire to find out who is dealing with things.

Best of luck.

Thank you for your comments. Much appreciated. The 1st two letters sent to them were from the solicitor and they have just ignored him - he has chased it, and we have chased it - absolutely nothing! As you say, everything should be in “cold-storage” but nobody communicates anything so we just don’t know. They just don’t respond to anything.

Dominique… I’ve sent you a message…

Dominique…thanks for the clarification…

Someone dies in UK… while being owner of property in France. The UK Solicitor will need to contact a French Notaire… so that the inheritance (of the French property) can be dealt with under French Law.

I suggest you get your Solicitor to redirect his letters…:frowning: