Wednesday, April 30, 2008

That small print's a b@#$%

The missus and I maintain a joint bank account for the majority of our financial transactions, but she keeps an account active at another bank, which shall remain nameless (although the illustration above might give you a clue), for occasional, minor expenditures. For instance, if she's taking a trip, she'll throw a little money in there so she can use that debit card for incidental expenses. Last Thursday, before we departed on a brief out-of-town trip, she deposited a check of about $300 in that account. She was aware, of course, that it might not be posted, and the money available, until the next day. It wasn't until Saturday that she used the debit card for that account, and she made another purchase on that account on Sunday. We were barely back in town before the letter arrived from the bank telling her she was being docked $70 for two insufficient funds transactions. A call to the bank provided the following explanation: Only $100 of the deposit was immediately available on Friday. Oh. The rest would be available on the next business day. Shouldn't that have been Saturday? The bank was open that day. Are you kidding? For purposes of the deposit, the next business day was Monday. Oh. So, it took four days from the time of the deposit for the money to be available in her account. They got a letter out to her telling her she was overdrawn quicker than they put the money into her account. What kind of B.S. scam is this? It's not like the check was from the Nigerian Lottery System. It was from my wife's employer, a well-respected local church, for God's sake. And I'm thinking that in this age of electronic banking, it would take about three seconds for the computer at my wife's bank to check with the computer at the church's bank to determine that, yes, the funds were there to cover the check. The most laughable thing in all this is that she could have just cashed the check and walked out of the bank with the full amount. Ridiculous.



Blogger PRIguy said...

I've come to rely on online banking. I go to the bank only when I get a check of some sort, such as my tax check. Otherwise, I go with direct deposit, and I pay my bills online. I have both a savings and a checking account with the same bank. Just two weeks ago, through a miscalculation or reading the calender wrong (most likely the latter) I didn't have enough in my checking account to cover a bill. I naively thought that since I have a savings account as well, the bank would simply transfer the money (about twenty bucks) into my checking account.

I was wrong. Not only did they not transfer the money, they also charged me a bounced check fee! I know it was my carelessness that led to this, but if for me it's only a matter of punching in some numbers and hitting "submit" one
time, it makes sense that this should be all the bank would have to do. And not charge me $25 to do it. I am losing faith in my bank, as I have lost faith in the education system, the medical profession and government.

May 2, 2008 at 9:48 AM  

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