Bank of America? I laugh

So, apparently, the banking industry has made new rules to dick customers out of their money. It’s not enough that the bank holds all your money already. Now they want to keep some of it for good. So if you post-date a check by 2 days, your bank can still cash it and then charge you oodles and ooodles of money for “overdraft protection.” The date is simply unimportant to the honouring the check part. No matter that you have a history of clockwork deposits with them, and that you have an impeccable banking history eith them. No, they would rather risk losing a customer (yes, Bank of America you have lost 2 customers) because they make a couple of hundred bucks by *not paying attention* to the date. That’s just a racket, ffs.

Because, even though their””software” doesn’t look at the date, it sure red-flags if you try to cash a check more than 6 months old. This from the “supervisor” on the other end of the line. So which is it? Does the “software” look at the date or not?

Honestly, this is stupid business practise, and I’m definitely taking my business elsewhere. Bank of America isn’t all the fluffy good neighbourly bullshit they try to sell themselves as. Bank of America is actually acting more like a petty thief. Goodwill actually does have a meaning, you know. You, Bank of America, could’ve let the thing to rest by not trying to tell me you’re doing me a service by returning me 4 out of 10 “overdraft” charges.

As far as I know, a legal signed and dated document is valid on and from the date of the signature (presumably with a reasonable limitation on its lifetime). Same for a check, if common sense would prevail instead of thievery. You sign and date a check, indicating its validity. I’m pretty pissed off with them at the moment, and I’m happy to talk about it. Had they done the honourable thing of apologising and returning the money to my account, this blog entry would have been full of praise.

Certainly the bank that does get my money will be. So far no complaints about the Bank of Oklahoma who has treated us with nothing but respect. We need local, unfortunately, for the everyday banking stuff, so we can’t be exclusive to them. Ah well. I’ll report back on the bank of choice in a few days. But for now, Bank of America is not my bank, they’re just a set of hoodlums.

mood: peeved at corporate greed, which apparently knows no bounds. flame away, people.

19 thoughts on “Bank of America? I laugh”

  1. Yeah, BofA has always sucked, in my experience. If there’s one around, you might look into Washington Mutual. I’d suggest Wells Fargo, but in my view they’re only slightly better than BofA — while WaMu has been a terrific experience for me.

  2. WaMu was who I used when I lived out in LA. As poor as I was and as little money that the missus and I had, WaMu was a really good experience. I have no complaints whatsoever, and I would have preferred to stay with them. I wish they were in Boston. Hey, WaMu, come to Boston, I’ll open account within 2 minutes of your arrival! Bank of America, bite me still. I won’t touch Wells Fargo: as old an operation as they are, they still act like the paranoid newcomer charging you for every little thing. It’s all part of the greater symptom of the death of customer service. Companies (see the idiots and morons at RIAA/MPAA for a good example) treat their customers, their bread and butter, their fucking rasion d’etre as adversaries.

    Whereas a company should feel priveleged for a customer having chosen their service (and expecting a reasonable level of, oh yeah, service), not the other way around. I’m not saying customers should go around being assholes. Lord knows that some customers can be highly annoying and not worth it. For the most part, though, customers only want a small subset of services, and not all the time. It’s that one time that a customer would like that little extra touch of service that can make or break the entire experience. Companies simply don’t realise that. Bank of America doubly so.

  3. It should come as no surprise to you that all that nickel-and-diming has helped make the banking industry the most profitable industry in the world. And looking at total revenue, your beloved BofA pulled in $49.6 billion for fiscal year 2004. They’re not even in first place though — that would be Citigroup with $108 billion (or in banker’s terms, 10.8 metric shitloads of overdraft fees). By contrast, everyone’s favorite software corporation Microsoft had just $36.7 billion in revenue that year.

  4. You should check out attaching a reserve line to your account. It’s way cheaper than overdraft fees. If you go negative, it just autofeeds some money ($200 at a time in my case) into your account and charges some amount of interest on it per day until you pay it back.

    FWIW, I use US Bank.

  5. This is all very well if I happen to actually overdraft. I didn’t. I dated the check for 3/15 — which logic, common sense, and general usage says that the check is *valid* from that day for presumably up to 12 months or so after that). Not before. Otherwise, remove the date field entirely. It’s misleading, it’s entrapment, it’s thievery. None of this stuff is about the customer, it’s about that glorious profit maximisation. I’m actually looking at cooperative banks and credit unions rather than these impersonal chains.

    And Bank of America can still go fuck itself.

  6. You should be suspect of any bank that targets college students. The only way you could be making money out of a group of people who keep ~$1000 checking accounts is by having lots of bull shit fines.

    I’m using US Bank now, which is such a bank, but I’m a college student. 🙂

  7. Andy,

    You’re correct — and I did read that section 4-401 thing before I blogged. The thing that bothers me about it is that the law isn’t to anyone’s advantage other than the banks’ — ie, it seems to exist for the sole purpose of collecting fees, and nothing else. I honestly don’t believe that anyone is liable for any charges, because the charges themselves are unreasonable to begin with.

  8. Look idiot, one way to avoid paying the fee is by not post dating a check, if you don’t have the money in the account, don’t write the check. That’s just simple banking 101. Who post dates checks? You can always come and open an account at the bank that I work at, we love collecting fees, especially from dumbass college students who have never managed their money before. Bankers are just like everyone else, just richer.

  9. BofA has screwed me more times than I can count, they have to to be the worst bank around!!!!!!!

  10. BofA has screwed with me also, I took my business to a local bank and have been treated right and I have had no more problems with my accounts.

  11. this reply is to keith:

    look cheaper, lets say all people are moral less, character-less cheaters. so why should one cheater keeps his/her money with another cheater? why shouldn’t employers start paying their employees in cash? most people go to bank not because they want to!

    fact: cheap people in banking or any institution brings their cheapness with them and trouble masses.

  12. I have also been screwed by early deposit of a post dated check but, not by BofA. My landlord usually only shows up for rent every 6 to 8 weeks. So, the last time he was here, we gave him a check for the current month rent and a post dated check for next month with the agreement that it would not be deposited until my next payday 2 weeks later. Well, he forgot and deposited them both the following monday throwing by bank account into complete turmoil. The resulting overdraft, NSF, and merchant fees have accumilated to over $400.00.

    I went to my bank to discuss this only to find them of no help what so ever. They would only tell me that the check was my ‘legal promise to pay a debt’ and they had to honor it. (read between the lines…LEGAL DOCUMENT) So then, why should the customer be required by 4-401 to provide additional ducumentation for an already legal document? Why should a bank be allowed to determine what parts of a legal document they choose to honor?

    About 8 months ago I had another situation where the bank honored a check without a signature on it. Again I went to the bank and they basically tried to tell me that I was without recourse. I asked the woman if my check was infact a legal document to pay. She very sternly informed me that it is legally binding. I then asked her how it could be legally binding without a legal signature. With this she began to he-haw and back peddle. The bank did eventually offer to give my money back. I refused because I did write the check. I was just angry to see how secure my funds REALLY were in their bank.

    Bottom line is that big business cares nothing about the little people because, as individuals, we can do nothing to keep them from screwing us. Unless the little people can come together as a whole and lobby / protest against big business and the law makers, it will just keep getting worse. I for one, dont see that happening amd neither do the banks. So, we might as well all just bend over and grab our ankles.

  13. Hey Keith, It funny that people like you tend to defend the aspect of where they work until they quit or get fired. And when people like you get fired, they quickly join the band wagon on the offensive – going around the internet and telling everyone the ills of their previous employer. Just because you are having issues with your bank job dosen’t mean you go looking for people to punch in the face.

    I myself have worked at jobs that involved towing cars, selling cars, selling loans, selling homes and other customer service. In my work experience, it easy to point fingers at customers, but I soon realized that while I blamed the customer, my employers were busy finding ways to screw me as well with pay cuts and more hours. Corporate America is very dangerous to the weak and vulnerable and that includes you keith. Believe it. It either takes negotiations and threats from a worker’s Union or a Class action law suit to change the ills of corporate America. The Government can’t do shit.

    This is best advise I can give to anyone with bank and credit financial problems. Keep your money whenever posible. Don’t give in to impulses. Do you really need to buy a blouse when your next paycheck isn’t in 2 weeks? Stay way from all checks, debit cards and credit cards. Stay away from anything and everything electronic! Keep atm cards that don’t have visa or mastercard logos on them and use them only for cash withdrawls!!! Pay “everything” with cash. Don’t buy anything or pay for anything that doesn’t offer cash or money order options. Leave your current bank and join a credit union or a local community bank. You should always maintain atleast $100 or more in your wallet at all times for your unavoidable impulses and situations.

    Corporate America doesn’t like people who keep their money; they want people to stay in a loop. As a matter of fact, you will get more respect from a financial entity when they realize that you are not nimble with your money. For instance, previous overdraft and an unstable checking account will automatically stop someone with bad-fair credit to be considered for a line of credit or Morgage loan by a bank. On the other hand, if you stayed long at your bank and kept a stable checking and savings account without overdraft fees, you will be approved for a loan 9 out of 10 times depending on your average family income.

    Hope that helps

  14. BofA hasn’t realized it yet but they are on the outs. Not for any of their nickel and diming BS, but just a plain lack of customer service.

    I always kept enough money in the accounts to get the Advantage customer services. Have a 19 year old daughter with no credit history and was trying to get her started with a piddly $1,000 dollar personal loan. I offered $1600 worth of gold bullion as collateral. No, that wasn’t any good. I said fine put the proceeds into a CD and you can hold that as collateral. Nope, that wouldn’t work for them either. There only option is to pay them $30 dollars to open her a $300 secured (by her savings account) Credit Card.

    Found a locally owned bank that was glad to write such a note. The daughter moved her account there and I have opened 2 accounts there also. And, one day soon BofA will be closing a couple more accounts.

  15. The worst bank? Waschovia!!! I used my debit card without checking my balance–dumb? Yes. But Wachovia paid the debit’s –5 debits and charged me @$35 for each. They said it’s the customers responsibiiity to keep track of their balance not theirs. Aren’t they a BANK? Isn’t keeping track of your balance, their business? Banks love it when customers do this because they got $75 buck from me and they are netting millions each month from dumb customers like me. Banks have found a lucrative way to pay for their superbowl advertising and Nascar sponsorships. They stick it to the little guy because, if you think about it, they hate the little guy. They don’t want to deal with you and I. They want the corporate accounts. Debit cards are the same as credit cards but banks deny that fact. They don’t have to approve a purchase. But they do it all the time because screwing the little guy is the only way for them to make money. They used to hand out toasters to get you to open an account. they don’t need to anymore because shortly only one bank will exist and we won’t have any choice about who we bank with . MBNA and BA have merged and there are a host of othre banks selling themselves to the highest bidder. Last I looked, monopolies are against the law but noone is doing anything about it.

  16. Response to Craig:

    A check is properly payable even when it is postdated UNLESS you give written notice to your bank and describe the check with sufficient certainty.

    A check is NOT properly payable if there is a missing signature on the front. You have LEGAL RECOURSE against your bank for paying on a check that did not have the bearer’s signature. You “may” even have legal recourse against the teller (and thus, your bank) for telling you that the check was paid correctly when in fact, it was not.

  17. Every one of you is a loser. Looking to cheat or fudge the system. Look in the mirror looooooser. Pay your bills and keep enough money in your account to cover your expenses. I have been with Bank of America for about30 years and have never had a problem with them. I don’t post or predate my checks. So sorry about it but if you do they will catch up with you.

  18. I call B 0f A thinking that they work for me (the customer)…silly me! They are thieves who hire poorly spoken un-educated people, who blow smoke up your ass. I actually had one customer service rep tell me that I need to learn how to balance my check book and another tells me not to spend money I don

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