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Common questions

Why do IBANs make payments easier?

All the EU countries have different ways of expressing account numbers and formats for making domestic payments. The IBAN provides one common style, (even though they look different) of account number format across the EU and EEA. It's easier for banks to identify if a customer has missed, added or transposed any numbers.

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Does it affect all payments or just euro payments?

Strictly speaking, IBANs only apply to euro payments. However any payment to the EU or EEA has the potential to be converted to local currency. We strongly recommend the use of IBAN and BIC for all payments you make or receive from the EU and EEA including sterling payments.

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Does it affect sterling payments within the UK?

No, you should continue to use sort codes and account numbers for sterling payments in the UK.

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What happens if I don't provide IBAN and BIC information to the payer?

The paying bank may decline to make the payment, which could affect your cash flow. If the paying bank agrees to make the payment, then it may levy extra charges for making the payment.

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Can I use IBAN and BIC for other countries?

Yes you can. You can quote the IBAN as your account number and the BIC as your bank details in the same way that you present the information for EU and EEA. The information is sufficient for the payment to reach your account at NatWest International.

Check the validity of an IBAN number

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