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The Mutual Fund Mandate Conundrum

I always use the biller option in net banking to set up mutual fund SIPs. This time I was set to help an elderly gentleman to set up a SIP in a scheme run by UTI Mutual fund and that led me to write this post - one after several months in this blog! He has his savings account with a PSU - Canara Bank and I must say that is one tough bank to deal with. Every update requires a branch visit and they charge for literally everything - even for mobile number and email ID updates, separately. It cost us ₹59/- including GST.

Tip: If you are unable to reset your net banking password for Canara Bank due to your date of birth not being registered with them, use the Unix default - 01 January 1970! 

Now coming to the actual topic, 

One Time Mandate (OTM)

MF Central (MFC) has been my choice for managing mutual funds, especially for account particular updates, ever since they launched. As long as your investment value does not exceed ₹10 lakhs, they allow doing most of the things online. If you were procrastinating on that mobile number or email ID update just because of an office visit requirement, MFC is the place for you. They have built a neat interface and things get done in a time-bound manner. Things like consolidation of folios are a breeze as long as account particulars are the same across folios. 

With Canara Bank, not offering the biller option, I had to opt for OTM setup for this gentleman. At MFC, I was prompted to set up an OTM in order to start the SIP and for this, I was provided with two options - CAMS and KFintech. Assuming it to be just like payment gateway choices, I went ahead with CAMS. After repeated failures at the bank's end due to myriad reasons, it was finally successful. Got charged a sum of ₹177 for a simple operation and the problems just began.

TipKnow various banks' mandate setup charges

Despite OTM registration successful confirmations from the bank and MFC, when I tried registering the SIP by clicking on the "One Time Mandate" option, the OTM which was shown until then kept disappearing from the screen. 



This baffled me and multiple communications with MFC did not help much. They kept asking me to try again and send the screenshots. Then a sudden realization dawned - does it matter where the mandate is registered? I set out to look for who is the registrar for UTI MF and that turned out to be KFintech. 🤦‍♂️

Could this be handled better?

Definitely, IMO. All that had to be in place (in MFC) was some help text informing users about what difference it makes depending on who you register the mandate with.

I have two choices now - 
  1. Register another mandate with KFIN and pay setup charges to the bank
  2. Go with a CAMS registered fund house
And I am likely to choose # 2. 


I had shared the above observations and suggestions with MFC and they replied stating they would consider my feedback - I hope to see it implemented in the coming months!


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