Joint account, am I being too sensitive

(66 Posts)
catabouttown Mon 08-Jul-13 12:54:46

Hi there, I have recently opened a joint account with DP, I handle all our household finances and budget, i set up the account so I was the main applicant and he the second applicant...

But every time we get a letter about it, it is addressed to Mr DP and Ms Catabouttown...as I am listed as the main applicant on all our documentation I assume It is just their default option to list the man first, and its driving me potty!!

Background, I have always been adamant that I will keep my name on marriage and one of the reasons for this is how I remember my mum getting letters from banks addressed to either Mrs Husbands initials and last name, or Mr and Mrs husbands initials and last name. From a very early age I used to see these letters and feel offended that she was addressed by her husbands initials rather than her own! Like she was married and therefore her own name didn't matter anymore...so I am seen as a militant feminist by some people for only wanting to receive letters addressed in my name hmm

Anyway, I know it is in my name so not so bad but I am still feeling irked that DP is being addressed first despite him never having been listed first in any of our correspondence with them. I want to contact the bank and ask them why this is, but don't know if that's a bit over the top??

HappyDoll Mon 08-Jul-13 12:55:53

Nope. That pisses me off too. Just proves we still have a long way to go.

catabouttown Mon 08-Jul-13 13:01:00

Exactly, it would seem like the most logical default option for their computer systems would be that whoever was the main applicant was listed first, it seems like they would have had to go out of their way to put the male applicant as the default, it makes my blood boil! Glad I'm not the only one!

Eyesunderarock Mon 08-Jul-13 13:06:03

Same for ours, it is a default, a hang-over from traditional letter writing practices.
We have friends that get mail for Dr and Mr X as a Dr ranks higher than a Mr according to the rules. smile

HappyDoll Mon 08-Jul-13 13:07:52

Also,I just don't open mail with his name first, his name is all I see when I glance at the envelope. Like you, I do all the home admin so he ends up opening it and giving it to me. Ridiculous.
What I don't understand is that if you want to be really neanderthal about it and presume a 'traditional' set up of man at work while woman runs the house, shouldn't all joint housey communication therefore be sent directly to the woman? Sending it to him means that it's one extra working day before it gets read because it's not opened until he returns from work...sometimes that can be days if he's away.

SoTiredAgain Mon 08-Jul-13 13:08:30

Oh this really pisses me off too (and my DP, but for a different reason). I applied for house insurance and asked that DP to able to access the account so that if there are any problems, he can ring up on my behalf. So what happens? We get renewal letter in his name! It's like I don't exist.

It's the same with council tax. I pay for that but it's in joint names and his name is always before mine.

HappyDoll Mon 08-Jul-13 13:09:53

sets about getting a Ph.D

eurozammo Mon 08-Jul-13 13:10:33

Same for us. The name on our account is [me] and [him] but the post is addressed the other way around. It is really quite irritating as that was actually my account for about 7 years before we made it the joint one.

ToffeePenny Mon 08-Jul-13 13:38:34

Do you think your name would have magically appeared second if you opened the joint account with a woman with your OH's surname?

You are being too generous in thinking that there is some sort of default treatment here. There isn't. Either someone had to manually input your details and chose to put you second or someone wrote (and authorised) system code to make you second. Nice huh?

I suspect you feel complaining is petty because after all, the letters get to you anyway. It isn't petty. Up until 1955 black people could take the same bus as white people to the same destination. Surely the fact that they sat at the back to do so, i.e. in 'second' place, was petty too?

Don't ring to 'ask'. Call them up and make them change it back.

On a more practical note if you are the one managing the joint finances there will come a time when you will need to correct a bill and the company (usually one of the amenities ones) will insist on speaking to your other half, not you, because their system will only take the name listed first as the payee, and that was him.

MyHumpsMyLovelyBabyBumps Mon 08-Jul-13 14:22:07

We use a warehouse club for shopping.

We set it up in Dh's name with me also having a card which I always leave at home or lose so even when I am on my own I have to use dh's card with his name.

I just received a card in the mail with a list of all their savings "I need for my growing family". Moisturizing cream for me, diapers, wipes, detergent and lady shavers and diet bars. Addressed only to me.

fanjobiscuits Mon 08-Jul-13 14:25:05

I would be just as annoyed. It's not an alphabetical thing though, is it?

HappyDoll Mon 08-Jul-13 14:30:20

I've just realised I don't even appear on our council tax bill even though I pay it and it is reduced because I am a full time student. So they accept I live here, but only want to communicate with him.

FossilMum Mon 08-Jul-13 14:41:40

Good God are they still doing that?! I was teed off when it happened to me 25 years ago.

FasterStronger Mon 08-Jul-13 14:43:47

I put Ms and my name first on the new account form and came back as Miss and as the second account holder.

I had to get them to reissue the cards as Ms FS.

0/10 Nationwide.

acrabadabra Mon 08-Jul-13 14:44:09

I was about to suggest that it's alphabetical. Mr comes before mrs. Dr comes before them both.

Need to find someone married to a Reverend to see how that works.

alarkaspree Mon 08-Jul-13 14:49:29

When dh and I applied for our first joint mortgage account we filled out the paperwork and they changed my name from Ms Myname to Mrs DHname on all their documentation. Damn you, Woolwich.

GoshlyoHeavens Mon 08-Jul-13 15:13:53

I don't like it. It's a bunch of crap. They do it with mortgages for 'legal' reasons which also seem to be crap if you listen to people who've ever tried to challenge it.

Takver Mon 08-Jul-13 15:14:14

That's crap, FasterStronger - it shouldn't be automatic either, because I'm with Nationwide & everything we do comes addressed to me. (Good thing to since DH never opens bank letters even if they are addressed to him personally about his individual account.)

Having said that I was a bit shamefaced when I rang up and ranted at the Organic Growers Association for sending out a renewal to DH for our membership and then afterwards realised I paid last time with his personal Paypal account as it had ££s in it & that's why he got it blush

FasterStronger Mon 08-Jul-13 16:12:35

Takver - I hoped it was a decision by the person keying the data rather than company wide.

oh dear on the Organic renewal... that the price of being the household financial manager!

fanjobiscuits Mon 08-Jul-13 16:28:56

Alarkaspree that is so annoying. My relatives do this which is one thing but a bank is quite another!

DuelingFanjo Mon 08-Jul-13 16:35:28

YANBU... as soon as I opened a joint account (In my married name) with my DH (we had been given joint cheques at our wedding) Halifax changed MY mortgage acount into my married name!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's always pissed me off. My house is in MY name and his flat is in HIS. Though we live together the mortgage is my mortgage not his and payments go from my Natwest bank account to the mortgage account using my maiden name. I haven't changed anything into my married name (bank/passport/driving stuff) so it's really annoying that Halifax just changed my mortgage account into my married name without even consulting me.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

tribpot Mon 08-Jul-13 16:40:36

It's not acceptable or appropriate. I don't seem to have come across this happening (inc on my mortgage, I can't see how 'for legal reasons' they could make me use my DH's surname). But I guess we don't tend to get that much paper correspondence so it's not always easy to tell. Our Council Tax bill is definitely in my name first, I've just checked.

nostress Mon 08-Jul-13 17:07:10

This annoys me too. Mortgage/bank account etc. We had two kids before we got married and they have my surname. When we get emails from school it says "to parent 'his surname'" grr.
We have a joint bank account and obviously his name first on everything mr x & ms y. When they want to do an account review they call and ask to speak to him even though he doesnt have anything with it. When I was at a review and they found out we were now married they asked if I wanted to be called mrs. I said absolutey not mrs y is my mother! Anyhow the fooking twonks did it anyway and changed it to mrs y ...grrrr. I've just graduated and now have a PhD so i popped in to ask them to change my cards etc to dr y. They said they needed proof. Hmmm just like the proof they need when i got married? Ceremony is tomorrow so i will pop into the bank on my way home to shove the certificate somewhere appropriate..

LRDLearningKnigaBook Mon 08-Jul-13 17:17:31

This could actually matter quite a lot, so do get it changed.

If you are meant to be the first-named account holder, you need to be that. You'd have no proof you'd intended it that way around later on, if you didn't correct this.

I expect often it doesn't matter, but I have heard that it sometimes does. I know we put DH first on ours because the immigration people told us it was better for his application for citizenship - I've no idea what else it might affect but I would suspect there will be things.

FWIW I had an almighty row with my bank who said it was illegal for me not to change my name hmm, so we ended up leaving that bank.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now