The Banking Code is a voluntary code followed by banks and building societies in their relations with personal customers in the United Kingdom. It covers current accounts, personal loans, savings (including cash ISAs) and credit cards.

Mortgages are regulated under the Mortgage Code by the Mortgage Code Compliance Board.

Investments are regulated by the Financial Services Authority.

The Code sets standards of good banking practice, which are followed as a minimum by banks and building societies subscribing to it.

It allows competition and market forces to operate to encourage higher standards of banking practice for the benefit of customers.

Established in 1991, the Code is now in its fifth edition. The current edition came into effect on 1 January 2001. It includes fresh requirements on basic accounts, transferability of accounts, ATM charges, customer liability for internet-based card transactions, and branch closures.

Although responsibility for initiating reviews of the Code rests with our sponsors the British Bankers' Association (BBA). The Building Societies Association (BSA) and the Association for Payment Clearing Services (APACS), the BCSB has an active role to play in identifying issues requiring attention and in co-ordinating consumer consultation.

Under the Banking Code, subscribers promise to meet Key Commitments, which include:


In addition to the key commitments, the Code sets out how customers should be dealt with, in such areas as:


Guidance for Banks and Building Societies.

This Guidance is intended to aid understanding and the implementation of The Banking Code, and it is made available to all interested parties, including members of the public.

The Business Banking Code is designed to align closely with The Banking Code for personal customers and was launched on 7 March 2002. It comes into effect from 31 March 2002 and The Business Banking Code and Guidance for Subscribers can be found on the jump station on our home page. Alternatively these documents are available from the British Bankers Association website www.bba.org.uk