Basic bank accounts are entry-level current accounts designed to allow more people to benefit from the advantages of bank accounts.
They allow people who would often not qualify for a standard bank account benefit from facilities such as paying bills by direct debit, having pensions and benefits paid directly into accounts, and access their money with a cash card.
One of the principal features of basic bank accounts is that they cannot be overdrawn, and generally do not include a cheque book, meaning they can be offered to a far wider section of society.
The government introduced basic bank accounts in 2003 with the aim of allowing more people to benefit from the advantages of bank accounts. There are more than 5.9 million basic bank accounts in operation.
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