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Should Banks Set Spending Limits To People With ADHD Or Bipolar Disorder?

Update Date: Jan 26, 2017 09:20 AM EST

Banks are encouraged to step up and adapt some systems already in place to help people with mental health problems. A person's state of mind greatly affects how he manages his finances like budgeting and paying bills.

Money and Mental Health Policy Insitute (MMHPI) believes that even daily activities such as budgeting and paying bills are compromised for people suffering from mental health problems. In the mission statement of British Bankers' Association (BBA), it stipulates that its commitment to raising standards includes working with mental health initiatives.

According to a report by MMHPI, one in four people suffers mental health issues in any given year. The risk of getting into financial trouble is higher for these individuals.

People diagnosed with ADHD or bipolar disorder tends to be more impulsive and can lead to over spending. MMHPI suggests that banks set a spending limit on credit cards, block access to merchants.

Individuals who are depressed or suffering from post-traumatic disorder usually struggle with short-term memory. They may have a hard time remembering their personal identification numbers (PIN). Banks can delegate limited permissions to someone who is capable of making sound financial decisions.

People who suffer from severe anxiety tend to stop taking calls or opening letters. The bank has the ability to set up communication facility similar for those with visual or hearing problems.

Polly Mackenzie, director of MMHPI, believes that financial institutions, like banks, should extend their support to people who are suffering from mental health problems, just like the services offered to people who have physical disabilities. He added that these people have lost the ability to stay on top of their finances.

BBA is committed to support their clients with mental health problems. However, the implication of stepping into the customer's privacy makes it difficult. The bank association's spokeswoman said that they are carefully considering the recommendations on customers with mental health conditions.

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