The European Parliament has approved the proposed Directive on payment accounts (PAD). PAD concerns the comparability of fees related to payment accounts, payment account switching and access to payment accounts with basis features. If approved by member states, anyone legally residing in the EU would have the right to open a basic payment account, irrespective of their financial situation and whether or not they have a fixed address. Consumers would also be entitled to information which enables them to compare offers from different PSPs and to make an informed decision as to which payment account is most suitable for their needs. It is intended that transparency on fee information and account switching possibilities will enable consumers to move and shop around more easily in the EU.
FAQs have been published on behalf of the European Commission, which welcomed the approval of the PAD.
What this means for you
If approved by member states, the latter will have 24 months to transpose the new rules into their national laws. PSPs will need to be ready to provide greater access to payments accounts and to facilitate account switching in the knowledge that they will be liable to compensate customers for any loss resulting from errors in the switching process.