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Bank transfers - Are the rules the same in every country for every bank?
Thread poster: Fan Gao

Fan Gao
Australia
Local time: 01:18
Member (2006)
English to Chinese
+ ...
Mar 2, 2007

Hi,
I was just wondering if anyone knew or had a document available that listed the following information I'm after:

For example, if an agency in the UK pays me GBP via Chaps to my GBP bank account in London then I receive the funds the same day. What if an agency in Germany pays Euros to my GBP account in London, how long should that take?

I used to work in a bank but I never worked in the area that dealt with international payments so I'm a bit clueless when it comes to this. I remember customers having the option of "economy" or "express" payments with a higher charge for the latter to speed things up, but is there a standard time period for international payments that works for all currencies in whichever country and for whichever bank?

Also, if you receive a currency that is different to the currency that your account is based in, does the conversion of the funds cause a time delay for you to receive the credit to your account?

Thanks in advance for any info you can share.

Best wishes,
Mark


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Angeliki Papadopoulou  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 16:18
English to Greek
+ ...
As far as I know... Mar 2, 2007

Time limits are closely related to whether your bank and that of the person paying you have a direct relationship. If not, it depends on how many intermediaries there are between the two. Converting to a different currency may add an extra day, and the whole thing may take anything anything from 3 to 10 days.

Regards
Lina


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RobinB  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 15:18
German to English
Not yet Mar 2, 2007

Mark,

Not yet, is the simple answer. But when (if?) the SEPA (Single European Payments Area) comes into force, at least the same rules will apply throughout the EU. But this being the EU, there are always exceptions, of course. And there was an article in the FT just the other day about how the SEPA plans have run into the rocks of Franco-German protectionism.

What if an agency in Germany pays Euros to my GBP account in London, how long should that take?


Depends on the agency's bank, apart from anything else. As a rule, expect 3 to 5 working days, but if it's some poky little Raiffeisen bank in the middle of nowhere, it could take longer, even if it's SWIFT express. And of course it's going to cost. Quite a lot

Robin


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xxxdasaschindle  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:18
Slovenian to German
+ ...
maybe a bank account in Germany for German customers? Mar 2, 2007

I have just a similar problem at the moment. Have recently moved to London from Germany, so mainly my customers are still from there of course.

If I should lose money because of the bank transfer from Germany to UK, isn't there a possibility to let the customers pay on a stil existing German account of mine?

Would that be legal?

I find it much more complicated to sort my freelance invoice matters here in London than back in Frankfurt.
Waiting for ages for my national insurance number, then my question is, is the insurance number the same as my tax number or do I get one? And when?

I do have my Ltd, organized by 1st Contact. But they are really puzzled.

Is there any translator or interpreter in a similar position to advise me on that matter?


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Serena Dorey
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:18
German to English
National insurance is not the same as tax Mar 2, 2007

dasaschindler wrote:

I have just a similar problem at the moment. Have recently moved to London from Germany, so mainly my customers are still from there of course.

If I should lose money because of the bank transfer from Germany to UK, isn't there a possibility to let the customers pay on a stil existing German account of mine?

Would that be legal?

I find it much more complicated to sort my freelance invoice matters here in London than back in Frankfurt.
Waiting for ages for my national insurance number, then my question is, is the insurance number the same as my tax number or do I get one? And when?

I do have my Ltd, organized by 1st Contact. But they are really puzzled.

Is there any translator or interpreter in a similar position to advise me on that matter?


National insurance is basically your contribution to health care and your state pension. In the UK, we are automatically given one at the age of 16. As far as I know, non-UK citizens have to apply for one on arrival in the UK.

A national insurance number is not the same as your tax number. When you register as self-employed (there is a helpline number to help you do this) with HM Revenue and Customs, you will be given a tax reference number, which you then need to quote in all correspondence with them e.g. your tax return.

If you're employed then your employer should be able to advise you who your tax office is. And you will be given a PAYE reference number for all the tax that you pay via that employer. You can usually find this on your payslip or P60 at the end of every tax year (UK tax year runs from 6 April to 5 April).

As for the bank account, most of my clients are in Germany and pay me into my UK business account. I have had no problems with that. My bank charges me to make a payment abroad but not to receive one from abroad. Check with your bank though, because it varies from bank to bank.

Hope that helps

Serena

[Edited at 2007-03-02 16:04]


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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 15:18
English to German
+ ...
Please stay on topic Mar 2, 2007

Hi Dasa (?),

dasaschindler wrote:

I have just a similar problem at the moment. Have recently moved to London from Germany, so mainly my customers are still from there of course.

If I should lose money because of the bank transfer from Germany to UK, isn't there a possibility to let the customers pay on a stil existing German account of mine?

Would that be legal?

Why not? My company had a subsidiary incorporated as a UK private limited company for some time - the UK entity had a German bank account for exactly this reason.

Waiting for ages for my national insurance number, then my question is, is the insurance number the same as my tax number or do I get one? And when?


May I suggest to post a separate topic regarding this issue?
Thanks.

Best regards,
Ralf


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