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France cuts red tape to help disgruntled bank customers

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France cuts red tape to help disgruntled bank customers
Photo: AFP
09:32 CET+01:00
A new law comes into force in France on Monday that will come as a relief for disgruntled customers of banks.
French banks are not exempt from subjecting their customers to the often painful process of French administration. 

And just the thought of switching to another bank is enough to send shivers down the spines of some. Indeed, a full 40 percent of French people say they find the process of switching banks to be tedious. 
 
Another recent study showed that one in four French people considered changing banks to be a "risky" move.
 
And it's perhaps this tediousness combined with the perceived risk factor that means only around 4 percent of French people have changed bank in the past year, compared to around 10 percent across Europe. 
 
But perhaps all this is about to change.
 
From February 6th, the banks will essentially have to do all the work for you when it comes to switching banks - and they will have to do it for free.
 
 
 
The new law is a part of the "loi Macron" - a bill named after the former economy minister Emmanuel Macron which aims to deregulate the economy and labour market. 
 
And it has made things quite easy on the banking front - all you'll need to do is tell your bank that you want to switch and sign a document and then leave the rest to them. 
 
On their part, they will then be obliged to take care of all monthly payments attached to your account, any checks that haven't been cashed yet, and even to contact you if any money is paid to your old account. 
 
Previously banks didn't have any kind of deadline to tell you about old payments going into your account, and as a result up to 450,000 checks were rejected each year because of an defunct bank account, reported Le Figaro newspaper.
 
Just remember, the changes don't take effect until Monday next week - February 6th - so if don't hurry down to the bank just yet if you're looking to make the change. 
 
To read other changes coming into effect in France in February, click here
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