The Whiny Jew

Complaints and Oberservations on American Culture

Banks Are Anal Intruders

TopSecret-AnalIntruderLast fall 2017, Everbank terminated our business checking account without notice while my wife and I were traveling in the states for three and a half months. When we attempted to make our usual monthly transfer our personal checking account at another institution, we couldn’t, so we freaked out. We had bills to pay! So we called the bank who said the funds were gone! GONE! They didn’t know what happened. Holy shit! Are you fucking kidding me? Is this theft? Ten agonizing minutes go by when they call us back to say they figured it out: the bank decided to close our account due to a “business decision”. Brilliant. Thanks for the heads up. They apparently alerted us by FedEx to our mailbox only. 30 days after that, they sent us the balance by cashiers check to our mailbox which we would not get to for another 2 months.

My god, what a fucked up bank. In this day and age with telephones (100-year-old technology) and email, someone from the bank could have contacted us as a courtesy. Apparently, their policy allows them to simply inform us by US snail mail. What if we had a more active account with transfers in/out, credit card payments, etc? We might have heard sooner I suppose when people’s checks started bouncing. Jesus H. Christ. Abysmal, rude and unprofessional.

What an unenjoyable experience. You think you place trust in a financial institution to keep your back and give them good business, that they would treat you with some compassion or professionalism. Assholes. (We later learned that Everbank did this to some of our friends and partners too, so we’re not alone.)

So we then had to scramble. We had to find the cashier’s check and open a new business bank account somewhere ASAP. I contacted our mailbox, and fortunately, they found the check and mailed it to us overnight. We had to wait a few days to find a Wells Fargo branch while on our trip to open a new account. That went smoothly but took a few hours. What a harrowing experience.

Fast forward 1.5 months and I’m trying to transfer $25,000 from Wells Fargo into my personal checking account at another bank. I set this up in early January so we could make transfers easily. Today, I learn my daily limit restricted to $10,000, with a $15,000 30-day limit. WTF? They are just fine accepting $100,000 in, but they restrict my transfer out? Sure, I guess I can use a wire, but that defeats the purpose of a free bank-to-bank transfer I set up. So holding one’s money hostage is not illegal? I hate wasting my time calling customer support. And this time again proved why I hate calling. They were not able to help at all, just hid behind their “policy”.

Apparently, I learned that my limit would be raised if I were a “qualified” business. I asked why my account was not already qualified. They said we just need to make one transfer to become qualified. Huh? What is the point of that? To show we know how to use a website and make a transfer? To show we can make baby steps? Anyway, when qualified, our limits increase to $15,000 daily and $25,000 30-day. That’s better, but they are still holding our money hostage.

So I capitulated for now. Let’s at least transfer $10K of the $25K transfer started. But I can’t even do that because they want my phone # to send me an access code. That’s fine, but it’s not shown on my online account! Why not? I provided it when I signed up. My phone is on file, but somehow they don’t believe I own the phone?! I ask the agent, why would I give you a bad phone number when I signed up? I repeated my number to the agent and confirmed it. Great, so now you have my confirmed number, so help me start this transfer. Of course, he could not. Apparently, I have to wait for their security team to arrive at 8 am to figure this 10-alarm fire out to re-verify I am the owner of my own phone number. But, I said, YOU’RE in taking my call, why are they not?

Convenience just isn’t in the cards with financial criminals today, folks. They’ll paper it all over with security concerns and policies “to protect you”, but at the end of the day, they want your money and will do anything it takes to make it hard for you to get it back. I will post an update here when I know more.

 

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