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U-turn over ditching Premium Bond prize cheques

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Written by: Emma Lunn
25/06/2021
National Savings and Investments (NS&I) has changed its mind about axing prizes paid by cheque.

NS&I will no longer be moving all customers to having Premium Bonds prizes paid directly to their bank accounts, meaning that customers who receive their prizes by cheque can continue to do so.

Initially NS&I was due to begin phasing out the prize warrants – which are like a cheque – from the December 2020 prize draw, with the last prize warrants being sent in February 2021.

But it pushed this back until spring, due to the difficulties some customers had when trying to register their bank account details with NS&I.

But the NS&I annual report 2020-21 says that the state-backed organisation has now opted not to remove prize cheques completely.

The report says that while NS&I will continue to encourage all customers to have Premium Bonds prizes paid directly into their bank accounts or reinvested, customers can continue to receive their prizes by cheque.

The vast majority of Premium Bonds prizes are paid directly into customers’ bank accounts, or automatically reinvested into more Premium Bonds.

In the June 2021 Premium Bonds prize draw, nearly nine out of 10 (88%) prizes were either paid directly into customers’ bank accounts or reinvested into more Premium Bonds.

Ian Ackerley, NS&I chief executive, said: “We have responded to feedback from some of our customers and we have decided to retain the option for them to receive Premium Bonds prizes through the post. We will continue to encourage customers to have their prizes paid directly into their bank account, as many have done so in the last 12 months.

“Having prizes paid directly into bank accounts is quicker, easier and more secure for our customers, while also being more sustainable and better value for the taxpayer. Customers who want to have their Premium Bonds prizes paid directly to their bank accounts or have their prizes reinvested, do not need to choose to manage their NS&I accounts online or over the phone, and our customer service teams will be on hand to help if they require further assistance.”

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