HSBC Customers Could Have Accounts Closed If They Refuse To Wear Masks In Branches
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HSBC customers may have their accounts closed if they refuse to wear face coverings while in a branch, the bank has said.
HSBC, which also owns First Direct and Marks & Spencer Bank, issued the update to customers yesterday, saying it reserved the right to 'withdraw' accounts if customers put themselves or staff 'at risk'.
It added that the message did not apply to those who are medically exempt from wearing a face mask.
Jackie Uhi, head of branch network, HSBC UK said: "Consider whether you need to visit the branch or could manage your banking from the safety of your home via our digital channels.
"If you do visit us, please wear a face covering and maintain a safe distance from others.
"If individuals put themselves or our colleagues at risk, without a medical exemption, we reserve the right to withdraw their account."
HSBC told The Sun that it has not yet had to closed down any accounts due to the face mask rules.
It has also not been confirmed whether or not the warning applies to Marks & Spencer Bank branches, but LADbible has contacted HSBC for more information.
First Direct, meanwhile, is an online-only service.
The government has ordered people to wear face coverings in various indoor settings such as banks, post offices, building societies, high-street solicitors and accountants, credit unions, short-term loan providers, savings clubs and money service businesses.
Other settings also include public transport, supermarkets, places of worship and premises providing hospitality.
People are not expected to wear a face mask if they are medically exempt, however.
"You are expected to wear a face covering before entering any of these settings and must keep it on until you leave unless there is a reasonable excuse for removing it," the government website says.
"You should also wear a face covering in indoor places not listed here where social distancing may be difficult and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet."
Earlier this week, Morrisons announced it had banned customers who refuse to wear a face covering while in store.
Chief executive David Potts said only those with medical exemptions will be allowed to shop without a mask from 11 January.
He said: "Those who are offered a face covering and decline to wear one won't be allowed to shop at Morrisons unless they are medically exempt.
"Our store colleagues are working hard to feed you and your family, please be kind.