We often receive statements of account from mutual fund houses, which we find annoyingly incorrect in terms of data capture. We then need to write to the registrar and get it corrected which is a painful process, not to mention the time spent in doing so.
It is often the case, about 90% of the times, that the financial adviser takes it upon herself to fill in the details to save investors’ time. The distributor may be a frequent visitor to the household but may not know the exact postal address, bank account details or email. So, she would just fill in the details as known to her and this would result in incorrect submission of data itself. On the other hand, even though the data is correctly provided, the entry may be wrong due to data capture errors.
Earlier, data was captured based on the original/physical applications; now, with technological advancement and changes in regulatory framework, the data capture has to happen overnight and this has made the task quite challenging. In addition India being a vast country with diverse communities, sometimes the names are uncommon and this leads to wrong entry of names. In certain communities, names are common for both genders and this, too, leads to a very common error, i.e a wrong gender is entered.
The address capture is now made easier with the regulations making it mandatory for the investors to register with Central Depository Services (India) Ltd (CDSL) and becoming know-your-customer (KYC) compliant. So, now the addresses have to be same as that registered with CDSL.
The other common error occurs in the bank account numbers. Thanks to core banking, the numbers are no longer easy to remember as they run into 16 or 17 digits.
About 80% of the times, emails are incorrectly entered as people often have complex IDs. This actually can have serious implications as statements and other communications may be sent to the wrong person.
To get over these issues, few aspects that investors should look at are:
•Write the names, and other details in bold/capital letters
•Write the email ID in capital letters to avoid any ambiguity
Now that KYC has become mandatory, ensure that you are KYC-registered so that the address is correct. This will ensure that all mailers and other documents reach you correctly through the postal route.
Enclose a cancelled cheque for correct capture of bank details; this will help in redemption/dividend payouts to the correct bank account.
Make sure that details of the second and third holder is also filled in correctly; this will ensure correct allotment and will eliminate rejects.
In about 10% of the instances there are mismatches between amounts written on the application forms and the instruments.
As per the latest regulations, third-party cheque into the investment is not allowed. So, make sure that your name is printed on the cheque. Alternatively, enclose a copy of the bank statement as a proof; this will help if there are any joint holders in a mutual fund investment.
While the responsibility of correct data capture lies with the registrar and transfer agent, an investor can just facilitate the process to make it better and accurate.
N.K. Prasad is president and chief executive officer of Computer Age Management Services Pvt. Ltd.
Illustration by Shyamal Banerjee/Mint
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