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Another bank rant......long post......

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Another bank rant......long post......

Old 06-29-2007, 03:15 PM
  #1  
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Default Another bank rant......long post......

Well, it's my turn now. I currently bank with SunTrust here in SC. Technically, I have banked with them for over 12 years--they merged with CCB, who bought out SCN, who bought out American Federal, who I had originally opened my account with. I had not been using the account with them much since I had a joint account with the soon-to-be ex wife, but with the divorce coming I deposited my last paycheck there and was planning on using it as my primary bank. That was a week ago. This past Wednesday, I swung by an ATM to get some spending money and was shocked to see that I would go into overdraft if I withdrew any funds. Well, I parked the car and went inside to see what was going on. The teller punched up my account and told me the payroll check I deposited was coming back....she couldn't tell me why...she just said it was coming back. I made a bee-line back to work and got with the president of the company to ask what was going on. We use a payroll company to take care of all our employee's paycheck, so we called them to find out what was going on. They checked with the bank the check was drawn on, and saw no problems....funds were there. They also said that they had no record of the check I deposited being processed on their end, so they were at a loss as to why my bank was returning it to me. I started making telephone calls to my bank....the local branch first, then the customer service call center in Atlanta. No one could tell me why the check was being returned, nor could they provide an image of the check for me to inspect. All they could do is tell me I would have to wait for the USPS to deliver the actual check back to my house. I spoke with 3 separate customer service reps at the call center, along with a supervisor, the branch manager of the bank I made the deposit at, as well as one of his assistants. The CSR's at the call center all said the check was being returned due to insufficient funds, which sent me back to the payroll company. Contacted them again, and was told the same thing as I had been told before--the bank the check was drawn on had funds in the account, and still had no record whatsoever of the check being processed on their end. I started to think.....perhaps it was an error in the processing at my bank....perhaps a faulty magnetic ink reader or some other problem with a piece of equipment. So, I called my bank's service center and asked for a supervisor. I explained my predicament and asked him if he could verify that the account numbers on the check had been entered into their system correctly. He said that was impossible......that there was no way a mistake like that could happen, and that if it had it would've been corrected in their "proofing department". I asked him what happened in the "proofing department". He just said it was to catch and prevent mistakes like I described from happening. I asked him if I could get a scanned image of the check, and he said I would have to request that from my local branch. So, first thing this morning, I called the manager of the branch where I made the deposit and brought him up to speed on my problem. This guy was belligerent from the start.....he said if the check was coming back, it was a problem on the issuing bank's part, and not Suntrust's. I asked him about the possibility of the wrong account information being input, and he responded with the company line that it was impossible with their checkpoints in place. I asked him to get a scanned image, and he said he'd try but that it was very hard to get that to happen quickly. He said I should wait until I got the check itself, which would be here in a few days. I told him that was not an option, since I had bills to pay and no money in my account to pay them with. About 10 minutes after I hung up the phone with him, he called back to say he had the image and I could come by the bank to pick it up. He went on to say that he spoke with someone at his customer service center who said the check even had been sent to the issuing bank and they had returned it marked NSF. Once again, that sent me back to the payroll company, and once again they said their bank account had funds there and they had no record of the check being processed there.
I went to the local branch and picked up the image. As soon as I got back to the office, I looked at the image of the check, found the account number, and compared it to the account number that Suntrust had entered that was printed at the top of the image. Guess what.....it was off by 1 numeral. Sure enough, Suntrust had been trying to process the check under the wrong account number. And to further embarrass themselves, none of the individuals that I had spoken with who had access to this same image had caught it. It took me less that 10 seconds to find their mistake.....apparently they do not feel an old customer is worth spending that time on. Also, I caught them in a bald-faced lie.....the issuing bank never processed the check, since it was attempting to be processed under the wrong account # by Suntrust. So they could not have returned the check marked NSF.....
To add insult to injury, they will not credit my account until I return the original check to them........
Looks like time to change banks, fer sure.
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Old 06-29-2007, 03:48 PM
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Default Re: Another bank rant......long post......

Thats why I deal with a local 10 to 12 branch bank. The only problem I have ever had was something small which they picked up on and called me to get it fixed. If I need something I just pick up the phone and can talk to the same person every time.
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Old 06-29-2007, 05:01 PM
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Default Re: Another bank rant......long post......

I'm NEVER going to stick with a bank again after a merger.
I don't care who they are.
If I wanted to be in that bank, I would have started with that bank.
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Old 06-29-2007, 09:04 PM
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Default RE: Another bank rant......long post......

I used to work for SunTrust. "Used to" being the key words there. Large banks are more interested in "cross selling" services to customers so that it makes it too difficult to move their accounts when they get mad at the bank. Seriously. I absolutely hated that aspect of my job as Teller Supervisor. Used to be it was about accuracy and customer service. They threw customer service out the window and they use computers to cut down on employee error rather than encouraging and rewarding accuracy.

Tellers in large banks have quotas they have to meet for product referrals: so many credit cards, so many equity loans, so many home loans, so many blah, blah, blah. I do not like to sell and that is not what I liked about working in a bank. What I liked was seeing the same people come in every week, every month or every day, getting to know them, and making friends with them while I took care of their needs. I loved that. But that is not what banking is today. 17 yrs of experience in banking and I will never work in a bank again voluntarily.
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Old 06-29-2007, 09:14 PM
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Default Re: Another bank rant......long post......

I just got a letter informing me that the local bank I've been using for 22 years has been bought by PNC bank, I'll be moving all my accounts to the only other local bank here come monday morning, hopefully it will stay locally owned and operated.
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Old 06-29-2007, 09:30 PM
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Default Re: Another bank rant......long post......

"My" bank was bought out by Wachovia. I have never met such a helpful bunch of people. They seem to bend over backwards to be nice. O.K., my branch is in a small town. Their online services have (so far) been excellent. I use bill pay very successfully, and have been happy with them.

Oh. I'm retired from a division of Citi. Never had an account with them, and never will.
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Old 06-30-2007, 08:16 AM
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Default Re: Another bank rant......long post......

I really like BB&T. They are a big bank that acts like a small bank. They don't resell their mortages. Manage their own CC. They were the only bank that was willing to finance my house when I acted as my own contractor. They have turned down several buyout offers. Been with them for about 8 yrs. love them and I'm hard to please
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Old 06-30-2007, 08:55 AM
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Default Re: Another bank rant......long post......

Unfortunatly, as every year passes there are less and less small hometown banks around. Especially in large metro areas. If you live in smaller communities they are still available, but the problem is if they are really run well and are profitable, they are targets for buyouts, and not always from HUGE banks. One of our "local" banks which started here about 100 years ago, and only 15 years ago only had 20 branchs, NOW has nearly 120 branchs in 4 states from expansion. MY business sells to that bank and more branchs means more business but its not always for the better. I have to echo the above though, wachovia bought out a local branch here a couple years ago and I know several who are with them and love it. I lived in Sanford NC for many years and used NCNB/Nations Bank before they got bought up, thats was a great bank.

fwiw.. i use a credit union now for all my personal banking.
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Old 06-30-2007, 09:22 AM
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Default Re: Another bank rant......long post......

Credit Union? My wife keeps a small account at the old AT&T Bell Labs CU. Last week she went in to transfer some funds and could not communicate with the teller because of a language barrier.

Now, I have no problem with people whose native language is not English, but PLEASE! Don't put them behind the counter (as the sole teller) in a suburban community where EVERYBODY speaks English. Especially if MY money is concerned.

But yes, so far Wachovia has been great. MUCH better than the First Union that they bought out (where my mortgage originally was).

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Old 06-30-2007, 12:51 PM
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Default RE: Another bank rant......long post......

After listening to the branch manager and the customer service supervisor at the call center tell me that it was impossible for the mistake I described to happen, I pretty much made up my mind about moving my business elsewhere. I got the check back today in the mail and it was not stamped by the issuing bank, so what the manager said about them returning it is an outright lie. I can't wait until Monday when I go to close my account and stick the check in his face and ask him to show me where the issuing bank stamped it.....and tell him I make it a practice not to do business with liars.
It does seem like the days of the small bank are limited. I know a couple of people who were involved in the start-up of a small local bank, and the biggest reason they became involved was that once they started showing a profit, larger chain banks would approach them about a buy-out.
I do know that I will not stay with a bank if they are bought out by another larger, multi-state bank. Cherich is right...they don't care about customer service....it's all about the bottom line and making it hard for the customer to change by cross-servicing.
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Old 06-30-2007, 01:06 PM
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Default Re: Another bank rant......long post......

Time to wirte a letter?

http://www.consumeraction.gov/banking.shtml


State Board of Financial Institutions
1015 Sumter St., Room 309
Columbia, SC 29201
803-734-2001
Fax: 803-734-2013
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