All you need to know about the RBI's Revised Guidelines for Bank locker

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) recently floated new guidelines for safe deposit locker and safe custody facilities offered by banks

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NH Web Desk

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) recently floated new guidelines for safe deposit locker and safe custody facilities offered by banks.

To issue the revised guidelines, The central bank observed various developments in banking and technology, consumer grievances, feedback from banks and the Indian Banks’ Association.

While the revised instructions will get implemented from next year onwards, here are the new locker guidelines you need to know:

Sometimes, banks may witness possible situations where the locker-hirer neither manages the locker nor pays the charges. To assure timely payment of locker rent, banks are entitled to take a term deposit at the time of locker allotment. The amount will include three years of rent as well as the charges for breaking open the locker. However, banks should not insist on such term deposits from the existing locker holders or those who have a satisfactory operative account.

According to the new rules by RBI on locker facility, the banks will have the discretion to break open any locker following due procedure if the rent has not been paid by the customer for three years in a row.

According to the latest locker guidelines, the banks shall come up with a comprehensive board approved policy detailing the liability owed by them for any damage or loss to the contents of the lockers owing to their neglect.

Locker care will involve assuring the proper working of the locker system and safeguarding against unapproved access to the lockers. Ensuring sufficient measures against robbery and theft will also be the responsibility of the bank.

As per the new rules, a bank shall not be accountable for any harm or loss of belonging of locker due to natural calamities like earthquakes, floods etc. Banks though, will adopt proper safety to ensure protection from such disasters.

Also, banks will include an additional clause in the locker agreement that will prohibit the hirer to keep anything hazardous in the locker.

In case of events like fraud by banking professionals fire or building collapse, the liability of the banks has been set to 100 times the amount of the yearly rent.

Currently, state-owned banks charge Rs 2,000 as annual rent for a small safe deposit locker and Rs 4,000 for a medium-sized one in urban and metro areas.

The annual rent for a large locker is Rs 8,000. In addition, a customer has to also pay the applicable GST.

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