Most recently, Citibank, which is headquartered in New York, USA, made a transfer error of 500 million US dollars or equivalent to Rp 7 trillion (exchange rate of Rp 14,000 / US dollar) to the company’s creditor, the cosmetics company Revlon.
The bank has taken various ways, by asking Revlon to return the funds to bring the matter of transfer error to court. Unfortunately, the court did not allow one of the banks with large assets to recover its funds.
Reflecting on the Citibank case, what are the provisions in Indonesia if a wrong transfer occurs because of a customer’s error?
If there is a transfer error, the customer usually contacts the bank for assistance. This is reasonable considering that the bank has data on the account owner of the fund.
Unfortunately, the bank cannot promise that the funds will return completely. Because banks are not allowed to withdraw funds in someone’s account when that person doesn’t allow it.
Like it or not, the transfer error can be returned if there is an intention from the transfer recipient.
In PT Bank Central Asia Tbk, for example, the company said it would not be responsible for funds that had already been transferred to certain accounts.
“BCA cannot withdraw funds that have been transferred to a certain account number. The wrong funds transfer can only be returned if there is good intention from the recipient of the funds transfer,” wrote BCA on the official website, Thursday (18/2/2021).
However, customers can still contact the bank for assistance. The bank will contact the customer receiving the stray funds to be kind to return it.
What if the funds don’t come back?
The recipient of the funds could be charged under article 327 of the Criminal Code on the basis of the criminal act of embezzlement. This is because the bank has informed the recipient of the funds regarding a transfer error that should not have been received.
Meanwhile, in article 85 of Law Number 3 of 2011 concerning Fund Transfers, it is stated that recipient customers can be criminalized, in the form of fines or even imprisoned.
“Anyone who knowingly controls and recognizes as his property the funds resulting from a transfer which is known or deserves to be known are not entitled to be sentenced to imprisonment of up to 5 (five) years or a maximum fine of Rp. 5,000,000,000.00 (five billion rupiah),” write the provisions.
For that, before a wrong transfer occurs, double check the suitability of the name of the fund transfer recipient with the name of the account owner.