No regulator formally accounts for customer losses in safes. Pluard, who tracks legal records and information reports, estimates that some 33,000 cases are damaged each year by accidents, natural disasters and thefts. He often gets calls from people who are fighting their bank for compensation. “I tell them it`s hard, almost impossible,” he said. “What drives bank behaviour is regulatory oversight, and none of the supervisory authorities are attentive to safes. It falls through the cracks. When banks do something out of place, it is very difficult for customers to get some kind of relief. The warranty terms of the Wells Fargo guarantee fund govern the lease, the rights and responsibilities of your safe and are the rental conditions that are specified in the Safe Deposit Box Lease Agreement that you signed when renting your safe. Read the following pdf for important legal information, disclosures and conditions you need to know. “All the big national banks would prefer to be out of the security business,” said Jerry Pluard, president of Safe Deposit Box Insurance Coverage, a small Chicago-based company that runs the boxes. “They see it as a legacy service that`s not strategic for everything they do, and they`ve stopped focusing or resources on it.” He estimates that about half of the country`s coffers are empty.
A New York Times article reported 44 safe thefts in the past five years. Worse still, many bank failures have been committed, in which cash registers have been moved, displaced, drilled or accidentally closed. A major Maryland bank closed several stores and lost hundreds of safes. One customer lost $500,000 worth of gold and precious stones. But a safe is not a wise choice for everything. We`ve talked to experts to make a list of nine things you might regret if you lock yourself in your bank, which is not open nights, holidays or maybe even weekends. Every year, a few hundred customers report to the authorities that precious objects – art, souvenirs, diamonds, jewelry, rare coins, piles of cash – have disappeared from their coffers. Sometimes it`s the customer`s fault. People remove objects and then forget to have done that. Others allow children or spouses to access their boxes and do not realize that they have removed things. But even if a bank is clearly responsible, customers rarely get back more than a small fraction of what they`ve lost — if they get something back.
The combination of lax rules and customers who don`t pay attention to the fine print of their boxing leasing agreements allows many banks to deflect their responsibilities when valuables are damaged or lost. Modern safes have been in existence since the mid-18th century. Some banks now consider it an outdated service and have stopped offering safes. But there is always a demand for them, says Dave McGuinn, president and founder of Safe Deposit Specialists. Let`s be honest: if you`re not, say, an international jet-setter or a global businessman, you probably won`t need your 24/7 passport. It is therefore tempting to store it in a safe, where it is not lost, damaged or stolen. Our advice: Avoid temptation. In any event, the banks have vigorously fought against any requirement to make their customers a whole.
What is even more shocking is that no provision of the Bundesbank law regulates the coffers. If you want to be experienced with your chest, here`s what you need to know. The applicant replies that the 2011 agreement does not apply to Box 105, as the leases of several safes signed later did not change the terms of the 1998 agreement.