Bank transfers

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How can I transfer money locally or abroad?


There are several ways to transfer money to someone else (i.e. the beneficiary):-

Option 1:

You can ask your bank to issue a bank draft in any currency.


Option 2:

You can send money electronically through the banking system, by sending a transfer from one bank account to another. This is faster than transacting by bank draft. Not all banks operate in the same way and charges may vary depending on the bank or exchange bureau one uses. Check with your bank or exchange bureau for more details about applicable charges.

Some exchange bureaux may also provide international money transfer facilities without the use of a bank account. Check with the exchange bureau for more details. Our comparative tables do not include charges for such money transfer facilities - however more information on how such Money Transfer services operate can be accessed from  http://mymoneybox.mfsa.com.mt/pages/viewcontent.aspx?id=259 

The sending bank/bureau (sometimes referred to as the "remitter" or “remitting bank/bureau”) may charge a fee for the service it provides. The receiving bank/bureau (sometimes referred to as the "beneficiary") may also charge a fee for incoming payments. Charges may differ depending on the way the transfer has been requested. You are likely to pay lower charges if you order a transfer through the bank’s internet banking service. Higher charges may be applicable if you order a transfer through a bank branch.

A customer is usually offered one of the following three choices on who is to bear any charges in relation to a payment: -

"SHARE" transfer: The sender will pay fees to the sending bank. The receiver will receive the amount transferred, less any fees charged by the receiving (and any correspondent) bank. Unless you request otherwise, transfers are usually sent as "SHARE".

"OUR" transfer: All fees will be charged to you as sender - i.e. the receiver gets the full amount that you send. Any charges applied by the receiving bank will be billed to you (usually sometime after sending the payment). Opting for “OUR” is not recommended especially for transfers in euro or other EEA currencies.

"BEN" transfers: All fees relating to the transfer will be charged to the receiver, at the request of the sender. Opting for “BEN” is not recommended especially for transfers in euro or other EEA currencies.
In some countries, OUR and BEN charges are not used and all payments are processed as SHARE.
When OUR or BEN are permitted, charges are usually much higher compared to SHARE

 

Sending money to another bank

Before sending any money electronically to another bank (whether located in Malta or elsewhere), you should ask your bank to give you the following information in writing:

  • the value date: an indication of the time (and when it starts) in which funds are to be credited to the account of the beneficiary's institution once you order your bank to execute the transfer. The bank will be able to give you such an indication once all the information which you give to the bank is complete and correct (see below).

  • the method of calculation of any fees and charges which you will be requested to pay. Where possible, the bank may also be able to give you an indication of the fees charged by any correspondent and beneficiary banks if such fees are to be paid by you ("OUR");

  • the exchange rate used if you need to convert funds from one currency to another;

  • details of any complaint procedures should the service fails to meet your expectations.

All banks throughout the EU (including Malta, of course), are obliged to process transfers in euro and EEA currencies at the latest by the end of the next business day at no additional costs to the remitter or beneficiary of the funds. This also applies if you are sending/receiving payments from or to an account held with a bank in the EEA. If your request is made through a bank branch (rather than electronically through internet banking, where available), the bank may delay the process by a further one day. For more information check our section on SEPA Payments.


Ensuring your funds arrive safely at their destination


When sending a payment, your bank will need the following information from you in order to process payment instructions as fast as possible:

  • Complete and correct details of the beneficiary (name and address);

  • Correct bank account details of the beneficiary:- complete and correct name of the beneficiary bank, IBAN (International Bank Account Number) of the beneficiary's bank;

  • Correct bank account details of any correspondent bank, if applicable;

  • Amount in the currency of the transfer;

  • How fees will be applied:  either OUR, BEN or SHARE. In some countries, OUR and BEN charges are not used and all payments are processed as SHARE. In addition, if you select OUR or BEN, you may end up paying higher fees compared to SHARE.
    .
  • The purpose for which payment is being made; the subject for the payment is stated.
  • Your bank may charge you additional fees if you do not provide a correct or full IBAN or BIC Code. More information can be found on  http://mymoneybox.mfsa.com.mt/pages/viewcontent.aspx?id=324 Compensation may be payable if the bank or exchange bureau of your choice does not keep to its stated time limits, or does not comply with the instructions it receives. Ask the bank or exchange bureau for more information.

IMPORTANT: THE BANK OR BUREAU IS ONLY OBLIGED TO PROCESS A PAYMENT ON THE BASIS OF YOUR INSTRUCTIONS. YOUR BANK WILL NOT VERIFY IF THE BENEFICIARY IS GENUINE. ONCE THE TRANSFER IS PROCESSED, YOUR BANK WILL NOT BE ABLE TO AMEND YOUR INSTRUCTIONS OR CANCEL/REVERSE THE TRANSFER.

Receiving money from abroad

Depending on the bank of your choice, you may be charged a flat fee (depending on the amount you receive) or a percentage of the amount received, subject to a minimum or a maximum. Some banks may not charge you if the amount is below a certain amount.

  • Keep in mind that if funds are credited in an account of a different currency, the bank will apply an exchange rate to convert the amount.
  • If you are expecting a payment from abroad, we suggest you provide the sender of the funds with these details:
  • Your complete and correct details (name and address);
  • Complete and correct name of your bank (and branch, where applicable);
  • Your IBAN (International Banking Account Number) of your bank. It is likely that these details are already printed on your bank account statements but if in doubt, check with your bank;
  • Amount in the currency of the transfer;
  • How fees will be applied: either OUR, BEN or SHARE. In some countries, OUR and BEN charges are not used and all payments are processed as SHARE. In addition, if you select OUR or BEN, you may end up paying higher fees compared to SHARE.

 

But... what if...?

'my payment took very long'

Your bank must effect the transfer within an agreed time limit. If the agreed time limit is not complied with, or in the absence of any such time limit, and if, at the end of the fifth bank business day following the date of acceptance of the transfer order, the funds have not been credited to the beneficiary's bank account, you are entitled to compensation (the bank must pay you interest on the amount of the delayed transfer). For details on time frames regarding Euro or EEA transfer see our section on SEPA payments.

'I know that the transfer has been made but I have not yet received it'


If you are expecting funds to be paid to you by bank transfer (you are therefore the beneficiary), your bank should be in a position to make such funds available to you within an agreed time limit. If funds have not been made available to you, you may be entitled to compensation when (a) the agreed time limit is not complied with, or (b) if, the bank delayed in crediting your account within one banking business day following receipt of funds in its account.

'I was double-charged for my transfer'


Normally, charges are allocated as SHARED charges. If you request charges to be allocated OUR, the beneficiary should not be charged any fees by his bank and should be refunded.
The European Union makes provision for legislation which affords you, as the consumer, with protection when you send and receive money to/from any EU Member State. EU law might not be applicable to payments in currencies or countries outside the European Union. See SEPA payment below. 

 

Understanding your bank’s list of charges

When sending money by bank transfer, you will be charged either a flat fee or a percentage of the amount, subject to a minimum or a maximum.
You should always check about such fees prior to committing yourself to the service. Our comparison table should assist you with this; however you should always check directly with your bank for the actual cost.
The following additional charges may also apply:

  • a SWIFT charge: usually a flat fee.

  • other transmission charges: usually a flat fee which is usually applied when sending payment in particular currencies;

  • Same day value payments: usually a flat fee if you wish funds to arrive on the same day when the bank remits them;

  • Non Straight-Through-Processing (STP): usually a flat fee is added when you do not provide your bank with the IBAN and BIC.

 

Keep in mind that:

  • if you choose to pay all fees yourself ("OUR"), any fees charged by the beneficiary bank will be debited from your account. Your bank might not be able to tell you how much such fees could amount to at the time of the transfer.

  • if for any reason funds are returned to you, you might incur exchange charges if funds may need to be converted to the original currency. Make sure you discuss this with your bank.



Last updated: Sep 07, 2016

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