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#1
Old 07-18-2011, 11:30 PM
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I Hate My Bank SO Much

I am pitting my bank, Citizens Bank, for their ridiculous, non-sensical, self-serving policies that left me stranded at the gas station today with no way of paying for the much-needed gas I was there for.

Without even addressing the overdraft "hustle" Citizens has going on regarding checking/debit accounts (which I opted out of), they have caused me enough pain to take my business elsewhere.

I typically keep pretty good track and control of my checking account but recently some unexpected things came up which caused me to bring my balance to basically $0. So I got paid on Friday (I should have had direct deposit but that's a different issue) and I deposited my check via the ATM on Sat morning.

I know it can take an extra day or two sometimes for an ATM deposit to be cleared, so on Monday (today) morning, before I attempted to use my atm card at all, I called my bank to check on the status of my deposit. I was told they had processed my deposit and they told me my balance. Good, because my car was on empty and I needed gas before I could do anything.

So I get to the gas station (just barely) and try running my card...and it's declined. Insufficient funds. Hmmm...How could this be happening? I just confirmed that I indeed DID have sufficient funds. I was not happy. I called my bank back to find out what was going on. They told me they didn't understand why I shouldn't be able to use my card. After about 20minutes of waiting for them to search their database for the problem, the best I got was "well we see there is some kind of hold on your account and I'm going to forward you to the Corporate Call Center and they will take care of you.

Well I wait another 10 minutes or so for the Corporate Call Center rep to take my call (all at the pump at the gas station, mind you) and I find out that my "balance" that was quoted to me by the earlier bank employee was NOT in fact my "available balance". Since I deposited a check (not personal), the bank puts a 1-day "hold" on it before relinquishing the funds to me. I don't understand this at all. How do I have a "balance" then? That money is there, it's mine, but it's not "available"? I wasn't aware of the semantic jungle-gym that is bank policies. It sure would have been nice to have been told when ASKED, though. Why would I be calling the fucking bank to inquire about the clearance of a deposit and the sum of my balance, if I didn't expect it to be AVAILABLE to me?!

So, the Corporate rep says, "well, the best I can do for you is transfer you to a supervisor to see if they can override this." I said "Ok, please do so." After waiting another 7-8 minutes, the same rep (not a supervisor) comes back and says "I've spoken to my supervisor and he's said there's nothing we can do. Nothing at all."

Wow. Did you REALLY have to add the "nothing at all" part, fucking asshole? So, I told them that they had lost a 12yr client of their bank as I was taking my business elsewhere and hung up. I was stuck at the gas station with no way to get gas because my fucking bank fucked me over for no understandable reason and showed no willingness to reasonably fix the situation with a client who has been with them for more than a decade. GOOD-FUCKING-BYE!
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#2
Old 07-18-2011, 11:56 PM
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Wow. I use a community bank, and they release $500 immediately while the deposit is pending. I may not have as many "free" ATM's available, but it's worth the difference for me. I really dislike the big national chain banks. And I don't use ATM's often enough to worry about it.

What did you end up doing? There's enough gas to get you through one more day, I hope?

Did you mention that it was a payroll check? Some banks will also release funds sooner if they know it's payroll.
#3
Old 07-19-2011, 12:00 AM
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Do you have 5th3rd by you (yes it's a stupid name)?

They piss me off frequently but at least if I bitch they make it right - can't say the same for the last 3 banks I've been with.
#4
Old 07-19-2011, 12:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeaDragonTattoo View Post
Wow. I use a community bank, and they release $500 immediately while the deposit is pending. I may not have as many "free" ATM's available, but it's worth the difference for me. I really dislike the big national chain banks. And I don't use ATM's often enough to worry about it.

What did you end up doing? There's enough gas to get you through one more day, I hope?

Did you mention that it was a payroll check? Some banks will also release funds sooner if they know it's payroll.
I finally got ahold of my sister and she (thank jeebus) was nice enough to come up to the gas station and loan me $20.
#5
Old 07-19-2011, 12:05 AM
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Originally Posted by zoid View Post
Do you have 5th3rd by you (yes it's a stupid name)?

They piss me off frequently but at least if I bitch they make it right - can't say the same for the last 3 banks I've been with.
Yeah, why in the world would they settle on such an awful name?? But I believe there are a few I don't think they are all that close though. I'll have to find out.
#6
Old 07-19-2011, 12:05 AM
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So how did you get out of the gas station? Or are you still there?
#7
Old 07-19-2011, 12:06 AM
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Originally Posted by YogSosoth View Post
So how did you get out of the gas station? Or are you still there?
Post #4
#8
Old 07-19-2011, 12:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoid View Post
Do you have 5th3rd by you (yes it's a stupid name)?

They piss me off frequently but at least if I bitch they make it right - can't say the same for the last 3 banks I've been with.
This was not my experience with Fifth Third.

I finally got tired of their bullshit and switched to a local credit union that I am quite happy with.
#9
Old 07-19-2011, 12:16 AM
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Originally Posted by MsWhatsit View Post
This was not my experience with Fifth Third.

I finally got tired of their bullshit and switched to a local credit union that I am quite happy with.
Well like I said I have to bitch at them quite a bit - not an optimal situation I agree
#10
Old 07-19-2011, 12:18 AM
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You should have said you were in a wheelchair and play the sympathy card. But big banks usually have no heart so it probably wouldn't have worked
#11
Old 07-19-2011, 12:26 AM
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Its the Saturday thing. After close of business Friday, you enter the grey and nebulous zone of Not Monday Yet. Nothing really exists there, because it hasn't been observed, you deposited Schroedinger's Check.

They don't want us anymore, they don't need us except to fulfill some pesky definition of being a "bank". Banking is too boring these days, they want to be out in the action! Then, when they lose a buttload, they gotta squeeze you.

It was a bad day when certified public accountants decided they wanted to be lion tamers. It was a worse day when we decided to let them.
#12
Old 07-19-2011, 12:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YogSosoth View Post
You should have said you were in a wheelchair and play the sympathy card. But big banks usually have no heart so it probably wouldn't have worked
Definitely no good over the phone...

But seriously, I've come to learn their is a certain "card" I can play at times in situations to my advantage. It's not so much a sympathy card, rather a "confusion card" or a "ignorance card". Now of course, you all well know that I seek to do nothing but eliminate ignorance. However, one thing that I hold in value above my broader fight against ignorance is my personal safety and well-being. By and large, the two things are one and the same; but there are individual instances where taking advantages of these "cards" can and does add to my safety and/or well being. But that's a different thread...
#13
Old 07-19-2011, 12:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamiemcgarry View Post
I know it can take an extra day or two sometimes for an ATM deposit to be cleared, so on Monday (today) morning, before I attempted to use my atm card at all, I called my bank to check on the status of my deposit. I was told they had processed my deposit and they told me my balance. Good...

So I get to the gas station (just barely) and try running my card...and it's declined. Insufficient funds. Hmmm...How could this be happening? I just confirmed that I indeed DID have sufficient funds.

...I find out that my "balance" that was quoted to me by the earlier bank employee was NOT in fact my "available balance". Since I deposited a check (not personal), the bank puts a 1-day "hold" on it before relinquishing the funds to me. I don't understand this at all. How do I have a "balance" then? That money is there, it's mine, but it's not "available"? I wasn't aware of the semantic jungle-gym that is bank policies.
Now you are.


Incidentally, Nigerian scamsters take advantage of this. If you deposit a fake check and call the bank a couple of days later, they will tell you that it has cleared. But doesn't mean it has really cleared -- you can still be liable for the funds a couple of weeks later when the check bounces.

So whenever you call your bank to check your funds you have to be really clear about the semantics, get the correspondent's name, and for Dog's sake don't trust that they know what they're doing. Run through a couple of scenarios with them.
#14
Old 07-19-2011, 12:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Measure for Measure View Post
Now you are.


Incidentally, Nigerian scamsters take advantage of this. If you deposit a fake check and call the bank a couple of days later, they will tell you that it has cleared. But doesn't mean it has really cleared -- you can still be liable for the funds a couple of weeks later when the check bounces.

So whenever you call your bank to check your funds you have to be really clear about the semantics, get the correspondent's name, and for Dog's sake don't trust that they know what they're doing. Run through a couple of scenarios with them.
Except it's the exact same check, issued from the exact same company, that I have been depositing (and they have been cashing) there for years. Those fly by night payday-advance stores have ways of verifying a check within minutes, why the fuck does a legitimate FINANCIAL INSTITUTION take multiple days to do the same thing?? And, if "what's my balance?" is no longer sufficient in detail to properly inquire to a bank as to how much money is there for the client, then time to find a fuckin credit union. Or a big hole in my backyard.
#15
Old 07-19-2011, 01:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamiemcgarry View Post
Yeah, why in the world would they settle on such an awful name??
Fifth Third Bank's history

AFAIK it's predominantly Cincinnati and adjacent regions.

There is, as far as I can tell, no single bank that is completely nationwide -- one available in Cabots Cove, Palatine Settlement, Picketts Corners, Conch Key, Alfalfa Prairie, Wheatville Center, Silver Gulch, Jericho, Longhorn Plains, Santa Carolita, Kealaikahiki, Glacial Falls, and Sunnyvale -- though Bank of America has branches in about 40 states. (Not recommending them, just saying they come closest to being nationwide.)
#16
Old 07-19-2011, 01:11 AM
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Many years ago, I worked in a bank. So sometimes I'm surprised at how many people are ignorant about how bank accounts work.

When you deposit a check in your account, the amount is added to your balance, and starts earning interest immediately. But at the same time, a "hold" is placed on your account in the exact amount of the check. Every bank does this. If it's a business or government check, the hold will range from two to five days, depending on your bank's policy. if it's a personal check, seven days is a pretty standard hold period. The days of the hold are counted only during business days. During this period, that money is frozen in place. Like I said, it's still earning interest. It's still your money. It's just not going anywhere until the hold expires. Note that the hold expiring has absolutely nothing to do with the timetable for the check being cleared by the bank upon which it is drawn.

So the time between a check clearing the bank and the funds from that check becoming available for you to withdraw is normally about 5 business days. Under normal circumstances, if you call the bank and ask your balance, they'll tell you two numbers: your total balance (the sum of the money in the account) and the "available balance" which is the total balance minus the sum of all current holds.

In the OP's situation, a check (presumably a business check) was deposited to a basically empty account on a Saturday. So there will be no available funds until probably Thursday. If the OP is an adult, then no matter what the idiot on the phone told him, the OP should have known no money was available. Yes, whoever told him his "current balance" instead of his "available balance" screwed up, but the OP really has himself to blame. Any other bank recommended here will have basically identical policies.
#17
Old 07-19-2011, 01:16 AM
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My credit union does not place a hold on payroll checks. Personal checks under $500 also don't get held. And even for amounts over that, they'll often waive the hold if the check writer is known to them. (I.e., my husband will sometimes write me a large check when we're transferring money from his bank to my bank, and the credit union doesn't place holds on those anymore.)
#18
Old 07-19-2011, 01:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Seltzer View Post
Many years ago, I worked in a bank. So sometimes I'm surprised at how many people are ignorant about how bank accounts work.

When you deposit a check in your account, the amount is added to your balance, and starts earning interest immediately. But at the same time, a "hold" is placed on your account in the exact amount of the check. Every bank does this. If it's a business or government check, the hold will range from two to five days, depending on your bank's policy. if it's a personal check, seven days is a pretty standard hold period. The days of the hold are counted only during business days. During this period, that money is frozen in place. Like I said, it's still earning interest. It's still your money. It's just not going anywhere until the hold expires. Note that the hold expiring has absolutely nothing to do with the timetable for the check being cleared by the bank upon which it is drawn.

So the time between a check clearing the bank and the funds from that check becoming available for you to withdraw is normally about 5 business days. Under normal circumstances, if you call the bank and ask your balance, they'll tell you two numbers: your total balance (the sum of the money in the account) and the "available balance" which is the total balance minus the sum of all current holds.

In the OP's situation, a check (presumably a business check) was deposited to a basically empty account on a Saturday. So there will be no available funds until probably Thursday. If the OP is an adult, then no matter what the idiot on the phone told him, the OP should have known no money was available. Yes, whoever told him his "current balance" instead of his "available balance" screwed up, but the OP really has himself to blame. Any other bank recommended here will have basically identical policies.
Apparently not the credit unions. And again, I am not arguing with the technicalities here. My point is, I'm not often in the position I was in today so I called the bank to see what the status was on my deposit. And I was told one thing and ended up finding out another. I think any reasonable person could sympathize here. Reasonable. Then again, you DID work at a bank.
#19
Old 07-19-2011, 01:57 AM
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I know people like to hate them, but I have been very happy with Wells Fargo. I have deposited huge checks, sometimes from obscure banks on the other side of the country, in both my business and personal accounts and had them fully cleared the next business morning, without any holds.
#20
Old 07-19-2011, 01:58 AM
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It really depends on the bank, these days. They have changed a bit in the last decade as far as what they make available for immediate withdrawal. I think the size of the bank may have something to do with it, too. I can speak for smaller institutions such as MsWhatsit's credit union and my community bank, which both give $500 immediately available for withdrawal/cash. The account holder does not have to have a balance to cash against the check up to $500 for payroll or in-state checks. My bank will cash a payroll check out even if the account holder's account balance is zero. It's not automatic, you have to be with a teller and request it and point out that it's payroll. The check has to obviously be payroll, like from ADP/Paychex or an electronic check of some kind, not just a hand written businesss check, though.

In-state checks clear the next day (while that $500 was already available), and out-of-state checks are the ones that may take 5 days, though I have yet to see one take longer than two. Banking systems are amazingly slow to upgrade. When I left banking in 2000, we were still filing taxes on big rolls of tape and using a DOS operating system! The banks have to be so very careful and absolutely certain a system they move to will not fail, that they stick for as long as possible with what works. I'm certain that's why you see retail stores able to automatically debit an account with a check, and hand the cancelled check back to the customer, while banks aren't there yet. The investment and risk of failure is nominal on the retail level, yet it's everything at the bank-to-bank level.

International checks have a 10 day hold, for obvious reasons.

So, back to the OP's concern, wherever you decide to move your money, make sure they make some of a deposit available immediately! I'm not sure if you might have averted disaster by visiting a teller on Saturday instead of using an ATM, for future reference.
#21
Old 07-19-2011, 02:02 AM
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I don't understand the American financial system. I know that, for some reason, U.S. banks don't let you overdraw your checking account, but isn't the purpose of credit cards to give you credit?
#22
Old 07-19-2011, 02:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Seltzer View Post
Many years ago, I worked in a bank. So sometimes I'm surprised at how many people are ignorant about how bank accounts work. ...

... During this period, that money is frozen in place. Like I said, it's still earning interest. It's still your money. It's just not going anywhere until the hold expires.

If the OP is an adult, then no matter what the idiot on the phone told him, the OP should have known no money was available. Yes, whoever told him his "current balance" instead of his "available balance" screwed up, but the OP really has himself to blame. Any other bank recommended here will have basically identical policies.
Oh c'mon. If you ask a business about their policies, they should be able to give you a truthful answer. Presumably the telephone correspondent is an adult as well.

I've read articles about this nonsense: telephone correspondent gives misinformation and bank reaps overdraft fees. It's disgraceful. I mean how many people call up a bank to ask, "Hey, I just deposited a check. When does it start earning interest? 1 What they typically want to know is when they have access to the funds. Oh, and when they ask, "When has my check cleared?", that's a code for "When will it be safe from bouncing?" Sheesh.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamiemcgarry View Post
Apparently not the credit unions. And again, I am not arguing with the technicalities here. My point is, I'm not often in the position I was in today so I called the bank to see what the status was on my deposit. And I was told one thing and ended up finding out another. I think any reasonable person could sympathize here. Reasonable. Then again, you DID work at a bank.
I for one sympathize with your rant, but to be fair there are lots of people working at banks who are just trying to earn a living. And linking borrowers with lenders is an important and honest endeavor.
Quote:
And, if "what's my balance?" is no longer sufficient in detail to properly inquire to a bank as to how much money is there for the client, then time to find a fuckin credit union.
Oh! We thought you wanted to know when you were earning interest! Never mind that it's a checking account.



1 Well, actually me for one.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Seltzer
When you deposit a check in your account, the amount is added to your balance, and starts earning interest immediately.
AFAIK, this hasn't been the case for years at certain banks, at least for out of state checks. I made a project of this years ago: I had to write a letter to their regulator before I got a straight answer. Apparently they can collect funds interest free for several days. IIRC, it was a change in policy related to the Fed's attempts to manage float better.
#23
Old 07-19-2011, 02:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Seltzer View Post
Many years ago, I worked in a bank. So sometimes I'm surprised at how many people are ignorant about how bank accounts work.

When you deposit a check in your account, the amount is added to your balance, and starts earning interest immediately. But at the same time, a "hold" is placed on your account in the exact amount of the check. Every bank does this. If it's a business or government check, the hold will range from two to five days, depending on your bank's policy. if it's a personal check, seven days is a pretty standard hold period. The days of the hold are counted only during business days. During this period, that money is frozen in place. Like I said, it's still earning interest. It's still your money. It's just not going anywhere until the hold expires. Note that the hold expiring has absolutely nothing to do with the timetable for the check being cleared by the bank upon which it is drawn.

So the time between a check clearing the bank and the funds from that check becoming available for you to withdraw is normally about 5 business days. Under normal circumstances, if you call the bank and ask your balance, they'll tell you two numbers: your total balance (the sum of the money in the account) and the "available balance" which is the total balance minus the sum of all current holds.

In the OP's situation, a check (presumably a business check) was deposited to a basically empty account on a Saturday. So there will be no available funds until probably Thursday. If the OP is an adult, then no matter what the idiot on the phone told him, the OP should have known no money was available. Yes, whoever told him his "current balance" instead of his "available balance" screwed up, but the OP really has himself to blame. Any other bank recommended here will have basically identical policies.
Bullshit. I have never, ever had a problem putting money on my account and then using it. Once it deposits, it's there.

Also, I love the rationalization: It's okay to lie, since every adult knows how it works. But, as you admit in the top of your post, most adults DON'T know how it works. You refuted your own fucking post, all so you could call the OP a child.

BTW, my sister works at a bank, too. Accounts get money the next day, by policy. So you don't even have the expertise to be lording over everyone else. How sad.
#24
Old 07-19-2011, 05:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
I don't understand the American financial system. I know that, for some reason, U.S. banks don't let you overdraw your checking account, but isn't the purpose of credit cards to give you credit?
Oh, he was using his ATM (automated teller machine) card - aka a "debit card" - not a credit card. Debit cards draw directly from your checking account, not a line of credit.
#25
Old 07-19-2011, 06:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamiemcgarry View Post
Definitely no good over the phone...

But seriously, I've come to learn their is a certain "card" I can play at times in situations to my advantage. It's not so much a sympathy card, rather a "confusion card" or a "ignorance card". Now of course, you all well know that I seek to do nothing but eliminate ignorance. However, one thing that I hold in value above my broader fight against ignorance is my personal safety and well-being. By and large, the two things are one and the same; but there are individual instances where taking advantages of these "cards" can and does add to my safety and/or well being. But that's a different thread...
Taking advantage of a "credit" card would have worked in this situation. Even if you don't like maintaining a balance, it's good to have one for emergencies.

(Based on a ti[p in an old Hardy Boys book I read 40 years ago, I also keep a $20.00 hidden in the car in case my wallet disappears on a road trip and I need just enough gas to get home.)
#26
Old 07-19-2011, 06:22 AM
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I feel your pain. We had a slightly different issue ourselves last weekend - my husband went to Stoke on Trent, our nearest city, and bought a comic from a comic shop, a lottery ticket, and then went to pay for his parking only to have his card declined.

Apparently fraudsters like magazines, lottery tickets, and paying for their parking, because these incredible purchases triggered our bank's fraud detection system and they put our entire account on hold.

Cue a desperate phone call to the bank and they eventually decided we weren't fraudsters and let us have our account back.






We didn't win the lottery.
#27
Old 07-19-2011, 08:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamiemcgarry View Post
...I typically keep pretty good track and control of my checking account but recently some unexpected things came up which caused me to bring my balance to basically $0.

...

So, I told them that they had lost a 12yr client of their bank as I was taking my business elsewhere and hung up. I was stuck at the gas station with no way to get gas because my fucking bank fucked me over for no understandable reason and showed no willingness to reasonably fix the situation with a client who has been with them for more than a decade. GOOD-FUCKING-BYE!
So, you threatened to take your $0 balance elsewhere in the future? And that didn't sway them at all?
#28
Old 07-19-2011, 09:07 AM
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Originally Posted by BigT View Post
Bullshit. I have never, ever had a problem putting money on my account and then using it. Once it deposits, it's there.
You can deposit a check for say, $1,000 into an empty account and then immediately withdraw $1,000? This is difficult to believe.

I maintain a balance in my account, and my credit union puts a hold on a portion of the balance of paper checks that are deposited---for example, written from my wife's account from a different bank. They don't freeze the entire amount, and it typically only takes a business day or two for the hold to be removed (not five). But there is a delay before the "available balance" equals the "balance." (This of course is not the case with direct deposits.)
#29
Old 07-19-2011, 09:08 AM
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Call when this isn't happening and ask what profile is attached to your debit card. I had a couple of issues a long time ago with making large debit purchases (New PC's! Woohoo!) and the annoyance of not being able to do it via debit due to the $1000 daily spending limit.

After chatting with the bank and them reviewing my history they agreed to move me to the next profile. Apparently there isn't much granularity however because I can now spend $99,000/day if I chose to and somehow rob another bank to deposit that money into my account.

Also associated with the profile are the amounts of deposits that are immediately preapproved for withdrawl. If I deposit anything into an ABM I'm immediately cleared to use it up to $10,000/day. We have to be careful to use my card though as we never bothered to have my husbands upgraded so if he deposits the same item into the same account it's held for 10 days.
#30
Old 07-19-2011, 09:10 AM
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I was stranded at the pump by BofA once. They are the most aggressive group of account-freezing assholes I have ever heard of. They froze my account, without warning, because I'd made what they deemed a "suspicious purchase." I'm don't even remember what it was anymore, but I'd purchased a completely ordinary item online. I purchase many ordinary items online, so I'm not sure what raised their hackles about that one.

The old man was a BofA customer, and his account was routinely frozen every time we went to Vegas, which we did a lot. Hell, two impulsive people living in Los Angeles = frequent Vegas trips, and they never seemed to figure out that people go to Vegas, and when they do, they tend to spend a lot of money. And I mean every single time this happened, so we started placing bets on when we'd no longer have access to plastic money.

So anyway, the aggressive account-freezing assholes got me again when I was attempting to fill up before going to a job interview. Here I am, trapped because they've held my money hostage, and have to hold for what seems like an eternity, before I can go anywhere. Fortunately, I'm super-paranoid about being late for interviews, and had given myself a ridiculous time window. I made it on time, no thanks to BofA.

Cunts.
#31
Old 07-19-2011, 09:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinyl Turnip View Post
You can deposit a check for say, $1,000 into an empty account and then immediately withdraw $1,000? This is difficult to believe.
You need to set it up in advance but it can be done IF they want to do it for you. I keep my chequing account fairly low and having to move money there 10 days before I need it would be challenging. Since I have other accounts with the bank they've decided I'm worth the risk of maintaining that profile.

It doesn't mean if I deposit a bad cheque they won't come back to me when it bounces and take the money out along with their usual insane service fees, but as long as I manage to not do that this works out for both of us.
#32
Old 07-19-2011, 09:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamiemcgarry View Post
Except it's the exact same check, issued from the exact same company, that I have been depositing (and they have been cashing) there for years. Those fly by night payday-advance stores have ways of verifying a check within minutes, why the fuck does a legitimate FINANCIAL INSTITUTION take multiple days to do the same thing?? And, if "what's my balance?" is no longer sufficient in detail to properly inquire to a bank as to how much money is there for the client, then time to find a fuckin credit union. Or a big hole in my backyard.
Especially for a payroll check. We once bounced a check in "the pay bills- deposit paycheck dance" and the bank reversed the charges and covered the bounced check when they saw it was a payroll check in the same amount that every payroll check had been for the past year.

Yikes. Switch banks and get a direct deposit.
#33
Old 07-19-2011, 09:19 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Memphis, TN
Posts: 3,104
Jamie, you need a credit card for emergencies.

My bank doesn't put a hold on payroll checks. My check is deposited Thursday night at midnight. The money is available to me immediately.
#34
Old 07-19-2011, 09:23 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 31,112
Bnaks are not there for us. When it comes time to take money out of our accounts, it takes a second. When it comes time to giving us money, however, they hem and haw and it takes days and days. Banks rule us and we have to bend over and ask nicely.
#35
Old 07-19-2011, 09:47 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: May 2003
Location: DC
Posts: 5,544
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finagle View Post
Taking advantage of a "credit" card would have worked in this situation. Even if you don't like maintaining a balance, it's good to have one for emergencies.

(Based on a ti[p in an old Hardy Boys book I read 40 years ago, I also keep a $20.00 hidden in the car in case my wallet disappears on a road trip and I need just enough gas to get home.)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Living Well Is Best Revenge View Post
Jamie, you need a credit card for emergencies.

My bank doesn't put a hold on payroll checks. My check is deposited Thursday night at midnight. The money is available to me immediately.
Everyone should have a credit card. I realize some people have such screwed up credit that no one will give them one or they have to pay some ridiculous user fee for a minimal limit, but as soon as a real card is available it should be acquired and used. I really don't understand why anyone who has access to a decent credit card would make a purchase with debit over credit when there is so much added risk when using a debit card.
#36
Old 07-19-2011, 10:07 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Uptown (Chicago)
Posts: 1,984
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigT View Post
Bullshit. I have never, ever had a problem putting money on my account and then using it. Once it deposits, it's there.
Yeah, I don't think you understand how your own account works. If you've got $1000 in your account, you can go deposit a $200 check, and immediately withdraw $200. At that point, your current balance will be $1000, but your available balance will be $800. You don't notice the hold because you've got the money you wanted.

However, let's say you have $1000 in your account, and you go deposit a $5000 check to bring your current balance up to $6000. Will the bank allow you to immediately withdraw $5500? No, because your available balance is still only $1000 for a few more days.

I suspect you, BigT, generally keep enough money in your account and withdraw small enough amounts that you've never noticed how the funds from each check create a hold. Either that or you're lying just to be contentious.
Quote:
Also, I love the rationalization: It's okay to lie, since every adult knows how it works. But, as you admit in the top of your post, most adults DON'T know how it works. You refuted your own fucking post, all so you could call the OP a child.
I didn't say most adults don't know how it works. I said I'm surprised at how many don't. Grown-ups should know this stuff, and most do (with you and the OP being obvious exceptions).

I'll freely admit I've never used nor worked for a credit union, so I suppose they may have different policies than banks or S&Ls. But I have to suspect most will have the somewhat standard hold policy for checks.
#37
Old 07-19-2011, 10:12 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 2,293
Man, I feel for the OP, since it sounds like a sucky situation all around....but WTF? How can you have zero money in your account and wallet?!? You basically had *zero money* and no credit card?

The last time I was *that* broke was my first year in uni. Methinks someone needs to take a refresher in adult money management skills

Secondly - why the hell would anyone _NOT_ have direct deposit? Why would companies even offer it as a 'choice'?

And don't even get me going on the stupid 'paid every two weeks' thing....
#38
Old 07-19-2011, 10:17 AM
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Join Date: May 2000
Location: somewhere up country
Posts: 4,859
My wife and I have a Citizens checking account, which we started a little over 18 months ago when we moved to the Chicago area from Atlanta. Because of some preexisting arrangements we're not motivated to change, paychecks go into our credit union account in GA, and for grocery/incidental money I make weekly deposits into the Citizens account via personal check. Citizens never puts more than a 1 day hold on those deposits before they become "available balance."

jamie, what I'd recommend is that rather than changing to a different bank where you'll experience almost identical policies -and where you don't have a history they can review- you go into your local branch and speak with the branch manager. With a consistent 12 year history of regular deposits from the same institution (assuming you don't have a history of overdrafts), they shouldn't have a problem changing your profile to reduce the hold on your deposits.

It would certainly be better for you to set up direct deposit of your paycheck, and to opt in on that "overdraft hustle" you disdained before, but just taking the time to speak to a bank representative in person may make a big difference for you.
#39
Old 07-19-2011, 10:41 AM
Member
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Western Pennsylvania
Posts: 26,599
I do all my banking, business and personal, with a very small local bank. On occasions where my checking balance was inadequate, they have transferred the necessary amount from my business account without any charge or pre-existing agreement.
#40
Old 07-19-2011, 10:54 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,821
Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Seltzer View Post
However, let's say you have $1000 in your account, and you go deposit a $5000 check to bring your current balance up to $6000. Will the bank allow you to immediately withdraw $5500?

I can indeed do exactly that. Talk to your bank.

Or maybe it's just a Canadian thing in which case Go Canada!*

* I was going to say Go us but the potential for misunderstanding was too great.

Last edited by Moonlitherial; 07-19-2011 at 10:54 AM. Reason: Reduced the quote for more clarity
#41
Old 07-19-2011, 10:56 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 1,489
When I see threads like these I like to mention that I love banking with Charles Schwab. In two years I have never been hit with any kind of hidden fee, never had funds go mysteriously unavailable, never had my account frozen, etc. Checks are free. Also, they don't charge any ATM fees - and they pay the competitors' fees.
#42
Old 07-19-2011, 11:02 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: My Computer, PA
Posts: 1,246
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anaamika View Post
Bnaks are not there for us. When it comes time to take money out of our accounts, it takes a second. When it comes time to giving us money, however, they hem and haw and it takes days and days. Banks rule us and we have to bend over and ask nicely.
Yeah! So what the fuck is up with that shit? Huh?!

Randy Seltzer I'm looking at you for answers

I for one hate the whole lot of them. Mother Fuckers. They fuck over mothers all the time, so I can say that truthfully. And apparently they are also parapalegic fuckers. Because jamie can attest to that. They would fuck babies too if they could I'm sure. They are basically human fuckers. They fuck over all their customers at every financially advantageous opportunity. I truly wish there was a better way. But there aint. And it blows.

(quite obviously I am engaging in some fancy wordplay...don't get all offended now. nobody is suggesting that any parapalegic babies get fucked. that's just too far.)

So I just follow the old tip my dad gave me - "Never have less than $100 in the bank. That's your zero, your absolute bottom. Banks screw up all the time." However, as my bills increase over the years, that amount needs adjusting. To like $1000...and eventually $10,000...ugh.

Last edited by Uber_the_Goober; 07-19-2011 at 11:03 AM. Reason: fun with spelling
#43
Old 07-19-2011, 11:39 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 14,000
Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Seltzer View Post
Many years ago, I worked in a bank. So sometimes I'm surprised at how many people are ignorant about how bank accounts work.

When you deposit a check in your account, the amount is added to your balance, and starts earning interest immediately. But at the same time, a "hold" is placed on your account in the exact amount of the check. Every bank does this. If it's a business or government check, the hold will range from two to five days, depending on your bank's policy. if it's a personal check, seven days is a pretty standard hold period. The days of the hold are counted only during business days. During this period, that money is frozen in place. Like I said, it's still earning interest. It's still your money. It's just not going anywhere until the hold expires. Note that the hold expiring has absolutely nothing to do with the timetable for the check being cleared by the bank upon which it is drawn.

So the time between a check clearing the bank and the funds from that check becoming available for you to withdraw is normally about 5 business days. Under normal circumstances, if you call the bank and ask your balance, they'll tell you two numbers: your total balance (the sum of the money in the account) and the "available balance" which is the total balance minus the sum of all current holds.

In the OP's situation, a check (presumably a business check) was deposited to a basically empty account on a Saturday. So there will be no available funds until probably Thursday. If the OP is an adult, then no matter what the idiot on the phone told him, the OP should have known no money was available. Yes, whoever told him his "current balance" instead of his "available balance" screwed up, but the OP really has himself to blame. Any other bank recommended here will have basically identical policies.
Not all of us have worked in a bank. In fact, I just found out this was true, from your post, right now.
#44
Old 07-19-2011, 11:40 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Montreal, QC
Posts: 55,761
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finagle View Post
(Based on a tip in an old Hardy Boys book I read 40 years ago, I also keep a $20.00 hidden in the car in case my wallet disappears on a road trip and I need just enough gas to get home.)
I remember that book! It was The Spring Break Mystery.
#45
Old 07-19-2011, 11:43 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Uptown (Chicago)
Posts: 1,984
Quote:
Originally Posted by YogSosoth View Post
Not all of us have worked in a bank. In fact, I just found out this was true, from your post, right now.
I blame the schools.
#46
Old 07-19-2011, 11:44 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: North Shore of LI
Posts: 18,191
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trom View Post
When I see threads like these I like to mention that I love banking with Charles Schwab. In two years I have never been hit with any kind of hidden fee, never had funds go mysteriously unavailable, never had my account frozen, etc. Checks are free. Also, they don't charge any ATM fees - and they pay the competitors' fees.
Ditto- Webster bank. They transfer money from savings to cover any overdrafts with no fees, the pay other banks' ATM fees, checks are free etc.

Love them.
#47
Old 07-19-2011, 12:05 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: California
Posts: 9,408
Quote:
Originally Posted by MeanOldLady View Post

The old man was a BofA customer, and his account was routinely frozen every time we went to Vegas, which we did a lot. Hell, two impulsive people living in Los Angeles = frequent Vegas trips, and they never seemed to figure out that people go to Vegas, and when they do, they tend to spend a lot of money. And I mean every single time this happened, so we started placing bets on when we'd no longer have access to plastic money.
Did the old man ever think to call the bank ahead of time and tell them he'd be making out of state purchases? I live in California, but have an office in Nevada (Vegas, actually) that I travel two about twice a month. Eons ago, I called BofA and told them this scenario, they marked my account, and I've literally never once had a problem. And yes, when I'm in Vegas, I'm bored, so I spend oodles of money on stupid shit like shoes and spas and fancy restaurants with my friends.

Further, I travel all over the US and the world (just for fun, not business)- so long as I call the bank and warn them where I'm going, all is well. I just got back from Fiji and had no issues because I called BofA the week before I was leaving, told them my travel dates and where I was going. Not one single issue. Same thing last time I went to Peru- though my friend's card got frozen (he didn't call his bank ahead of time).

As far as holds: BofA will immediately release $100 of whatever check, then the rest posts by the next morning- I think it posts at midnight, but I never check. Instate, out of state, whether I deposit it at home in California or by my office in NV. If I, for whatever reason, can't wait until the next day for the funds, I just go to a teller, have them cash the check, then deposit whatever difference I want in my account after I get the cash I need.

(FWIW: When I called BofA about this Fiji trip, the agent made a comment that I'm heads and tails more prepared than most folks- as most people don't call at all, then call screaming from a foreign country. Also, BofA has a number you can call collect from another country, just in case anything DOES happen with your card).

Last edited by DiosaBellissima; 07-19-2011 at 12:09 PM.
#48
Old 07-19-2011, 12:13 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: At long last, home
Posts: 11,043
Quote:
Originally Posted by DiosaBellissima View Post
Did the old man ever think to call the bank ahead of time and tell them he'd be making out of state purchases?
Yes, but it was a ridiculous precaution we should have never had to take. We originally thought it was just a highly irritating fluke, so we let it go, then began to see a pattern. Bastards. Funny is the first time he decided to nip that silliness in the bud, the phone banker seemed like it was bizarre that he would have to call to say "Please let me use my money." He had to explain to her that the account had been frozen several times during trips to Vegas, and so he neeeded her to do her teller magic so that we can throw our money into a fire pit gamble in peace.
#49
Old 07-19-2011, 12:16 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Further
Posts: 56,493
There is an "alternative bank" movement afoot, or at least here in the People's Republic of Minnesota. They have ads out on the buses that read "Your bank is a bad bank. A naughty, naughty bank." I am thinking about moving my vast holdings therein.
#50
Old 07-19-2011, 12:16 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: California
Posts: 9,408
Quote:
Originally Posted by MeanOldLady View Post
and so he neeeded her to do her teller magic so that we can throw our money into a fire pit gamble in peace.


I guess I don't see an issue with the whole process, since I do know of several people who have had their card stolen and used across state lines/ in foreign countries. Like I said, in my case, I just had to call once and warn them that I go to Nevada a lot, so it's not like I have to call them every two weeks or anything (THAT would make me want to shank a bitch).
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