February 06, 2008

One more reason to hate Bank of America

I think that Bank of America is seriously close to evil.

Look what I just found out. I use their billpay service online, where you send a check to someone through their website. I also do this with PNC Bank, and the way it works is like with any other check. The money comes out of your account once that person deposits the check.

Not with Bank of America. They take the money out of your account once they figure the check gets to the person or company you're paying. Where do they put it, you ask? They keep it in one of their accounts. How did I find this out? Because someone had asked me where their check was, and I looked it up and saw it the money had been taken out of my account. So I said, "You deposited it." And they freaked out saying "I think someone stole the check, because I never got it."

So I had to call Bank of America, and find out that they take the money for safekeeping even before the check is deposited. Well, what happens if the person never cashes it?

Good question. And actually one that made a difference with me. I had set up an automatic payment for our health insurance plan, and then realized I'd save money if I paid all the months up front. So I did. But I forgot to cancel the automatic payment plan. The insurance company just returned the checks to me, and I thought, "Oh no big deal, they never deposited them so what's the difference?"

Turns out the difference was Bank of America was taking that money, to the tune of $2000+!

I had to go through and cancel these transactions. I'm telling you. Bank of America is evil.

Posted by jason on 01:53 AM | Comments (8)

February 01, 2008

I am very angry at Bank of America

Living in California, I had to open a new bank account. All of my previous banks were east coast only. I settled on Bank of America, because they have the most ATMs and bank branches in the area.

But there has been a problem. Every single time I make a deposit with them, they place a "hold" on the funds for at least 10 days. Sometimes more. At first I was told this was because I was a new customer and they had to see if they could trust my account. But now... they still continue doing it.

And the latest one really burns me up. I have a small business, called Artichoke Artisans, and I'll write checks to myself for jobs that ran through it as payment. This business has an account with Commerce Bank in Delaware. So I wrote a check from Commerce to myself, and deposited it on 1/25. In the branch, they said a hold would be placed on it. I said please no, I wanted to be able to use the money to pay rent and other 1st of the month bills. They said, ok, we'll remove the hold.

I get a letter yesterday saying there was a hold. Until 2/11. The reason? "Confidential information leads us to believe the check will not be paid."

WHAT!? I own both accounts. I know there was enough to cover it... Who is the source of this confidential information, and what is it exactly?

I call them, they say sorry, it's confidential, and they don't know it. Only people in risk know it. I ask to talk to the people in risk. They say no customers can talk to the people in risk. I ask them to talk to the people in risk, and then talk to me. They say they're not allowed to talk to the people in risk. What can I do? Verify that the money has cleared from your Commerce Account.

So I do this, and it cleared on 1/28. So that means Bank of America is holding onto my money for 14 days without letting me have access to it. I go into the branch to talk about it, showing them the proof that the money already cleared. They said they can't do anything about it, once Risk puts something on hold, it can't be changed. I ask them if this is a federal law. They say, no it's not. Just Bank of America. But no one can talk to Risk. They tell me Risk doesn't even have phones.

So now all I can do is wait. 10 more days. The money is gone from my Commerce account. Bank of America has it. They just won't let me use it.

How can this be legal?

Posted by jason on 06:04 PM | Comments (8)