How do I get my missing ATM cash back?

23 May 2013

Q

I used my Cahoot debit card to request £200 from a Barclays ATM on a recent shopping trip. The ATM was making a funny noise and took a long time to dispense my cash. It was also situated in the entrance of a busy shopping centre, so it was a couple of minutes before I was able to count my cash from the peace and quiet of my local Marks & Spencer store. The ATM had only dispensed £140. As it was just a hole in the wall, I wasn't immediately able to report the incident in a bank branch so I kept the notes and my receipt and waited until I got home to call Cahoot. At first, it refunded me the £60, but the money disappeared from my account after a few days. When I queried this, I was told its records showed that nothing went wrong with my transaction. I have also spoken to Barclays and now neither company will accept responsibility for my loss. I know I was only dispensed £140. I am telling the truth but the banks don't believe me. What can I do?

A

Standing in front of a whirring ATM, hoping you'll get your cash without your card getting eaten is always nerve-wracking. And on discovering an error, with no staff there to help, it's often difficult to get things put right straight away.

On learning of Barbara's experience, Moneywise contacted Barclays first to find out what could have gone wrong with its machine. The bank explained it had carried out a detailed investigation of the ATM's transactions on the day of Barbara's withdrawal but was unable to see any evidence of a technical error. As such, it was unable to refund her.

But on contacting Cahoot, we were able to secure Barbara a refund. In a statement, the company said: "Ms Mumford's case has been checked again by Cahoot and the information provided by Barclays has been reviewed. The ATM records from Barclays do balance out and a £200 withdrawal is showing on Ms Mumford's Cahoot account, so there does not appear to be an error by either bank in this case.

"However, as a gesture of goodwill, Cahoot has agreed to credit Ms Mumford's account with the £60 she says she did not receive from the ATM."