Why I regret opening a Kotak 811 bank account!

Read my experience of opening a Kotak 811 account and what all I had to go through. Know the problems and issues you might face in the account opening process and how you might be able to avoid them.

In the month of September, I went on a spree to open bank accounts through bank apps. These are zero balance accounts that can be opened directly from the bank's respective apps. The primary purpose of this exercise was just to get a first-hand experience of opening and using these bank accounts so I can share it with you guys. While my experience with IDFC and DBS bank has been great, Kotak bank has been a nightmare for me. Here is how the KYC process for all these 3 banks happened:

DBS bank: I opened the wallet account of DBS followed by upgrading to the bank account. I received a call from the bank representative asking for scheduling an appointment with me to complete my KYC. To go back a bit, I live in Mumbai on rent due to my job but my hometown, my permanent residence is in Haryana. All my documents mention my Haryana address. So while I gave my Aadhar card as for biometric verification, the address for the appointment I choose was of my office.
Within a week the DBS bank agent came, did my biometric Aadhar KYC, took a photo of my PAN card and that was it. My KYC was complete the same moment and in their system, they recorded the communication address as that of my office. Simple and efficient to the core.

IDFC bank: Almost the same, the bank representative came at my office and they too recorded 2 address, my document address and the communication address as of my office. My being there was sufficient proof for both the banks to take my office address as the verified address. They did my biometric verification through Aadhar and my account was opened.

Now let's talk about Kotak bank. They have a 2 level account verification.
The first verification is done by the bank employee who will come to any place you want him/her to like my office in Mumbai and will do Aadhar based biometric verification. This will turn my account into a full KYC account.
The second verification is done by a third party agency executive who verifies your document address.

What it means is that you have to make sure that somebody is present at the house to provide the necessary documents to the agency executive. While the process is a little cumbersome, sounds not too bad to call it a big issue to change your mind opening the account. Let's now come to the points why I regret opening at 811 Kotak savings account:

  1. It is downright inefficient if the first verification done by the bank employee is at your document address only and then too you have to go for the second level verification! The bank is wasting their own money as well as the time of the customer.
  2. While the bank will tell you that the agent verification can be done without your presence, but when I met the agent, he took my photograph too which means either the process can't be completed without me or the agent did something he was not supposed to do.
  3. The bank asks you do deposit Rs.1000 after the first level verification is done as a sort of token of account opening. You can take out that amount later. No such requirement exists with either IDFC or DBS bank.
  4. Even if you go to the branch and offer them to submit your other documents like Passport for address verification, it is not acceptable and physical verification is mandatory.

What is my problem with Kotak 811 account

When my first verification happened and my KYC was completed, I did not have any idea that Kotak bank does 2 levels of verifications. I live in Mumbai and for my home is in Haryana. For a festival, I came home and scheduled the meeting for the same week. When the week was over and I had returned to Mumbai, the agent calls me up for address verification. I told him that I am out of town and therefore can't meet him. He replied if there would be anyone at home who can verify that I live there, I said sure, my mother stays at home only. The guy did not reach my home and within a few days after that, my account was frozen.
I called the customer care and the representative told me to approach any Kotak branch to physically submit the proofs. I go the branch at Koparkhairane but the people there told me that we need a local address proof and Rent Agreement is not accepted!
I went home again on 29th November and before going home, went to the branch where my account is linked to. I requested them to arrange for the agent verification again. The agent came the next day and took a photograph of my electricity bill (in name of my father), my Aadhar, PAN and of me. It has been almost 2 weeks and there has been no update and my balance in the bank account remains frozen.

Does it really make sense to have address verification twice when the first person is meeting me at my home or office address only? When offline accounts can be opened by going to the branch and it requires no physical address verification, why this extra layer of verification for a limited wallet account? I have multiple documents like my Driving License, Passport, Aadhar card and Voter ID card mentioning my permanent address. When I am offering you to give a copy of any of these to do the verification, what's the need for such high levels of rechecks? In times like today when people migrate to other cities frequently for jobs banks need to do better to balance security and convenience of their customers. DBS Bank is a much bigger international bank than Kotak and when they can have such a simple account opening process then Kotak needs to learn a thing or two from them. Right now I am trying to get the freeze removed by raising my problem through their mail system and if there is any update, will share the same in this article.

I now wrote a mail from my account and a fool replies that the account is frozen due to some mismatch in the address.
Dear Ankit,
Thank you for banking with Kotak Mahindra Bank.
We would like to inform you that, your account is in total freeze due to address mismatch in the documents provided by you.
Further, in order to activate your account, we kindly request you to visit any of our nearest branch along with valid id proof.
For mutual protection and security reasons we would be unable to process the request via this channel of communication.
Should your concern not get resolved within the time specified here, please call our 24X7 Phone-banking no. 18602662666 (Local Call Charges Applicable).

Such an excellent customer care they have. Do note that he again recommends me to visit the branch.

Now there is a hierarchy to escalate the complaint if it is not resolved at the Level1 but for that you need some SR Number. All I have from the mail communication is just the Interaction number is not accepted by the complaint registration system. So practically I am blocked now.
The next time I am going to my home town in March, I am going to submit an application for the closure of the account. I am hoping that for that they are not going to make me run here and there again!


Guest Author: Ketan15 Feb 2018

Same happened with me today. And my money is stuck. I am still thinking what to do. I am studying in Nagpur away from my Home Town. And I opened my account here in Nagpur by providing my local address where I am on rent. And they have messaged me of address mismatch. There is always a difference in permanent and temporary address. They should understand this.

Guest Author: Nidal18 Apr 2018

My account was frozen about a month ago too. I visited the nearest branch and they said there "might" have been typing error in the address and submitted a update request, they said account will be unfrozen within 2-3 working days. They said nothing about 2nd level verification or the agent. Then I went back after 2 weeks because my account was still frozen, this time they sent me back saying branch work is done and now it's upto back end staff to process the request. It's been 2 weeks after that and my account is still frozen. Any advice on this matter would be appreciated.

Author: Ankit22 Apr 2018 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 2

Please contact your bank staff to reschedule the agent visit. In case the agent visited and did not find you at home they will mark the verification as failed. However, you can get it retriggered by asking the bank staff to do so.

Guest Author: Rupesh Mandal28 May 2018

5 years back, my employer had opened a Kotak account for salary.
After I left the company the account was closed.
Yesterday I tried opening an 811 account on the app. And it showed me i cant open because i already have an account.

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