Can I cancel a bank transfer if I made a mistake?

The digits of the IBAN code of a checking account are not randomly arranged. They identify the bank in which the account is located, the office and the country, but also prevent us from making mistakes, for example, when making a transfer. The control digits located in the third, fourth, thirteenth and fourteenth positions serve to ensure that the account number is correct. But what if at the time of ordering a transfer we are wrong as a recipient, we duplicate the order or send more money than we should? In those cases, the control numbers will not save us.

The first question we ask ourselves when we detect that we have made a mistake is whether a bank transfer can be canceled. The reality is that if the transfer has already been executed, it cannot be canceled or modified; However, that does not mean that money cannot be recovered. On the contrary, if it has not yet been issued, we can cancel it, explain the experts of the financial product comparator. The key to correcting the error is to realize the failure as soon as possible since in these cases time plays against us.

Ordinary transfers are not executed immediately, but instead, accumulate and settle all at a certain time. Normally at noon or mid-afternoon, although banks can set several hours of cutting on the same day. Trying to correct the error before that time makes the difference between being able to cancel a transfer or not.

If we have made the transfer before the cut-off time, we will have a few hours to cancel it, while if we have done it after or during a business day, we will have more time.

Depending on the channel we have used to order it, we must go to an office, call or access the website or the bank’s application to request the amount to be reimbursed. If we try to correct the error through telephone banking or at a branch, we must provide the key data of the operation so that the manager can cancel the transfer, such as the account number from which it was issued and the account number of the receiver.

But what if I made an immediate transfer? Immediate transfers do not understand cutting hours. They are executed at the same time they are ordered, regardless of the day and time. Therein lies precisely its main advantage, that they are credited to the recipient’s account in a maximum of ten seconds and that they work 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Being immediate, they cannot be canceled.

Cancel a transfer that has been already sent

If the transfer has already been issued, it is irrevocable, that is, it cannot be canceled. From that moment, the resolution of the problem will depend on the good faith of the recipient. What we must be clear is that as much as we affirm that the transfer has been a mistake, “the beneficiary’s entity cannot withdraw the amount of the operation unless it has the beneficiary’s consent or a legal mandate, ” explains the Bank.

Therefore, the simplest solution is to contact the recipient of the transfer, report the error and ask him to return the amount transferred to the original account. If you do not agree to roll back the funds sent in error, you can use the standard interbank process established for these cases. We can also start this process if we have no way to contact the beneficiary. Our bank will ask the recipient entity to return the funds; However, once again, we will depend on the good faith of the recipient, since your bank will not be able to return the money without your approval.

If we manage the return through the bank, we will have to assume the commission set by our entity for those situations. Some entities claim that the commission is perceived even if the negotiations are unsuccessful.

The last option, resort to justice

If the beneficiary of the transfer does not want to return the funds, we will only have to resort to judicial means to recover them. The recipient of the transfer could be convicted of a crime of misappropriation and, according to the penal code, would face a penalty of a fine of three to six months if the amount of the transfer exceeds 400 euros or one to two months if It was inferior.

What if the IBAN and the beneficiary do not match?

Some clients wonder if making a transfer to a wrong account number having correctly entered the name of the beneficiary is not enough to get the money back. The truth is that the really important thing is the IBAN code and if it exists, the transfer will arrive at its destination.

The Bank of Spain recalls that a transfer “is addressed to an IBAN number automatically, without further verification by payment service providers, the payer or the beneficiary. Likewise, the regulator adds that “the other data entered in the transfer order (among them, the concept consigned in this) are messages destined to the beneficiary of the funds and not to the entity.

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