13
May
16

irresponsible

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On Monday I went to the mailboxes and learned that my checking account was overdrawn and the bank was piling on overdraft charges for every transaction. I had made quite a few, some for minor purchases, so we turned the truck around and have been living without provisions ever since. “How could I have been so irresponsible?” I asked myself.

I had emailed the manager of our branch of the bank just days before, requesting that she float an “overdraft protection” loan to help me make ends meet until my Social Security check arrives next week. “How could I have been so out-of-touch as to allow over $440 in unnecessary overdraft charges at the very time that Derek was arriving and needed to be reassured that he had arrived in a safe place?”

Now the mystery of my “irresponsibility” is solved. The bank manager never made the “check credit” transfer. Despite clear instructions to the contrary, my account was about $800 lighter than I’d thought. I am relieved to have the explanation of the discrepancy… not at the least because I now know I’m not losing my mind and am treating contributed monies as frugally as I can. I owe that much to you.

Yet this still does not address the bank’s exorbitant overdraft charges, which never should have been levied in the first place. Truly, the money should be put to better use—for kids—than bank charges. How extravagantly wasteful! The bank did nothing to earn the charges and, in fact, has made my situation much more difficult as a result.

Yesterday the improper charges were reversed by the bank, but they want me to find another institution to work with. This is a huge inconvenience, but it is better than being ripped off. No banking relationship is worth in excess of $400 or $500 for the mere privilege. No one should have to submit to such extractive practices. Plus, this is the only bank I’ve ever heard of that closes everyday for three hours over the lunch hour.

Don’t you think I need a change, anyway?

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3 Responses to “irresponsible”


  1. 1 Daryl Watton
    May 13, 2016 at 12:03 pm

    Inconvenient though it may be, Dan, it is definitely time for you to change banks. The bank you’ve been dealing with obviously don’t want any customers to treat them with such poor service. As well, the incompetency of the staffer you spoke to is a danger sign that your funds may not be very secure or safe to access in any event.

  2. 2 Frank Manning
    May 13, 2016 at 1:40 pm

    I went though that a few years ago when I was out of work for a year and a half. The bank was worse than a dehydrated vampire. Even after I closed the account they still were charging me some sort of fees. Today, long after the statue of limitations, some shady debt collector calls me regularly about what I still “owe” the bank. I’ve blocked their numbers so I don’t actually get the calls.

    But I still needed a debit card and a facility where Social Security can direclty deposit my pension payment. My solution was to turn to Washington’s oldest credit union, BECU. When I opened my account wuth them the young lady was sympatheitc but not shocked; she had heard lots of similar stories before. The credit union is open to all state residents, non-profit, owned by the people they serve (us!), and charge no fees whatsoever. I don’t even write checks anymore–I make all payments electronically. Si I would recommend, if at all possible, that you take your moiney to a credit union rather than a greedy, corrupt bank.

    • 3 Dave
      May 13, 2016 at 2:01 pm

      Run, don’t walk away from those leeches. In the meantime if it is a large regional or national bank branch, file a complaint with the CEO and also drop a line or call to the consumer rep at closest TV station to the bank. They NEED the publicity. Here we have a group funded and backed by the Atty Gen’s office called “Seniors vs. Crime” that would take an interest and advocate for someone in your position. Ck with the TX atty gen, maybe they have something similar.


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