Barclays has announced plans to shut down the UK current and savings accounts of British expatriates. | Majorca Daily Bulletin reporter


Life for British expats in Mallorca and across Spain has become a minefield of problems and hurdles since Brexit and there has been very little support with many feeling they have been sold out by the UK.

Now, Barclays bank is to close the accounts of UK expats which could impact savings and pensions access. The bank has announced that British people living abroad will no longer be able to hold a Barclays UK current or savings account.
This decision could potentially affect numerous expats who rely on these accounts for their financial transactions.

The bank’s decision follows a review of its international offerings that began in 2021.
Barclays is now sending out notifications to customers, providing them with a six-month warning before the closure of their accounts.

Despite this, wealthy expats have an alternative solution provided by the bank.
They can open a global account with Barclays.
However, to avoid a monthly charge of £40, they need to maintain a balance of £100,000 in the account.

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A Barclays spokesman stated that UK products are designed for customers living in Britain.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the city regulator, said it was a commercial decision as banks are allowed to set their own rules on which customers they accept.

Barclays’ approach mirrors the actions of Lloyds Banking Group in 2021, which informed 13,000 expats living in Europe that their UK-based accounts would be closed as it was no longer permitted to offer services.

The decision by Barclays is influenced by the expiration of “passports”, an arrangement allowing financial services in the UK to trade across the European Economic Area (EEA) due to shared regulatory frameworks.

While the UK has legislated for EU banks to continue providing services to customers in Britain, the EU has not reciprocated. This situation has led to UK banks being unable to provide current or savings accounts to retail customers in certain EEA countries, such as the Netherlands.

The closure of accounts is expected to impact “a small percentage” of Barclays’ overall customer base. Customers who believe their accounts have been closed unfairly have the right to complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service.