Unethical and criminal business practices
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA -- March 5, 2006
Bank of America has behaved in an unethical and criminal manner regarding two checking, two savings accounts and a VISA credit card. I have contacted several bank officials and they continue to lie about the situation without any reservation. Bank officials such as Michelle Hammer, Anna Reyes, Kimsey (last name unknown) and Kenneth Lewis behave as if they are completely above the law.
These problems began in early October, 2005. Many have not been resolved as of today. I have talked, written and faxed many letters to several âcustomer serviceâ divisions of this bank and have got no response or resolution. The Executive Customer Relations of Bank of America has done absolutely nothing to resolve many problems discussed in this letter. What they have done is to work hard to hide and white-wash the problems, mislead the customers and continue their criminal behavior.
Bank of America created this mess because of its pure negligence. It grossly violated my privacy multiple times and put me through hell when I tried to resolve it. I had to make many many calls to Bank of America and have nasty conversations with rude, clueless and dishonest agents and officials of the bank to try to correct this mess. After all that, the accounts are still not setup correctly.
This is the log I made (just a brief summary)
August 11, 2005: I opened a new savings account ending with âxxxxâ, with Bank of America.
I started receiving two statements: one for checking and one for savings
September 11, 2005: I called Bank of America to combine the two statements into one. I specifically asked the agent to send me a unified statement for accounts ending with âxxxxâ and âyyyyâ. Linking with account âzzzzâ was never ever mentioned. There was no change of address of any kind for any account. In other words, the request was very simple: please send me one statement for both, my checking (âyyyyâ) and savings (âxxxxâ).
Early October, 2005: customer De Silva calls me and states that my savings account information is on her statement! This should have never happened. No one needs to see my savings account details.
Early October, 2005: I called Bank of America and explained to them clearly that my savings account information should not be printed on another customerâs statement. The agent promised to fix it. Since my current savings account âxxxxâ was compromised, I decided to close it.
October 25, 2005: called Bank of America and opened new savings account âaaaaâ and transferred the money from âxxxxâ to this account. The agent was unable to close âxxxxâ on that day and I was asked to call back again to close it.
October 29, 2005: called Bank of America and made them close account âxxxxâ.
Why am I going through this? Because Bank of America messed it up.
Then I started receiving statements for three accounts and customer De Silva was not receiving any statements! At this point we have a bigger mess.
November 23, 2005: I called Bank of America and spoke to Chris of unit 1580 who assured me that this mess will be corrected. The statement for Prima Interest Checking âzzzzâ should go to De Silva in California and that should have never changed. No accounts should be linked to this account. The statements for checking âyyyyâ and savings âaaaaâ need to be mailed to me in North Carolina.
December 10, 2005: customer De Silva calls me again and states that my checking âyyyyâ and new savings âaaaaâ account information is on her statement! I was not receiving any statements! At this point we have even a bigger mess. Customer De Silva is extremely worried and agitated that her account details can end up on another customerâs statement, just like it happened to me. This should have never happened. No one needs to see my checking and new savings account details. How badly can Bank of America mess this up? This is definitely not unintentional human error. It is gross negligence.
December 12, 2005: I was very upset and called Bank of America and spoke to Jake Richards â supervisor of customer service of unit 1580. I demanded to speak to a manager. Jake Richards of Bank of America rudely informed me that there were managers on site but will not speak to me. He coldly said I should write to this guy called âken lewisâ. I asked him why the bank has phones when it can do all its business over US mail. He said thatâs how it worked and thereâs nothing he can do about it. He never mentioned that I should contact Executive Customer Relations. I found that out later all by myself. There was no way to get this mess fixed. No one cared at Bank of America or would take personal responsibility of this and see it to the end.
December 12, 2005: I called Bank of America again and spoke to Maria who connected me with Angela â officer of Bank of America in the Escalation Dept. of Executive Customer Relations. Then I was transferred to Anna Reyes-Jordan (704-386-5687) who said was from the Office of the CEO.
I demanded to speak to the CEO. Anna Reyes rudely refused and went on and on like a broken record. Then I demanded to speak to the CEOâs secretary to make an appointment to speak to the CEO. Anna Reyes rudely refused again. So does that mean the CEO of Bank of America and his secretary is in hiding or unreachable? I explained to Anna Reyes the situation and demanded compensation. She rudely hung up the phone on me at 11:30 AM EST on December 12, 2005. Do all customers get treated this way by Bank of Americaâs Office of Executive Customer Relations?
December 12, 2005: I called Bank of America again in trying to resolve this matter diplomatically and spoke to Luisa Shute. She also informed me that there was no way to contact the CEO of Bank of America. At least she did not hang up the phone on me. Still there was no way to get the situation resolved. Now I have no intention of speaking to anyone in this office.
December 12, 2005: I called Bank of America again and spoke to Anthony Lamers who said that no one by the name Jake Richards exists in Bank of America! So was I given a bogus name previously by this supervisor of customer service of unit 1580? What a way to get treated by a bank.
December 12, 2005: I closed my savings account âaaaaâ with Bank of America. It felt great!
December 12, 2005: I called Bank of America at 704-386-5687 again and spoke to Kimsey who did nothing to resolve the issue and transferred me to Anna Reyesâ voice mail. I left a message and have never heard back from her. Once again, there was no way to get this mess fixed. No one would take personal responsibility of this and see it to the end.
December 13, 2005: I called Bank of America again and spoke to Estrada of unit 1580. This agent informed me that my checking account âyyyyâ was still linked to Prima Interest Checking âzzzzâ that my mom used as her personal account! As you can see, after going through all that, we still have not fixed the problem. This agent also promised to fix this mess, just like many others have done previously. I asked for proof: screen-shots or images or other documentation of how my accounts were linked with other accounts. The agent said there was no way to provide any and I just need to take their word.
December 14, 2005: received a call from Michelle Hammer (714-792-5968). I demanded that Bank of America pay me damages. She was very polite and listened patiently. I wanted to give the bank an incentive to fix these problems.
December 15, 2005: I opened a savings account with the Credit Union at work and quickly removed the savings money from Bank of America. Wow, what a great day! The next step is to open a checking account with the Credit Union and get away from your bank. How nice would it be to share this with all of Bank of Americaâs customers?
December 24, 2005: I received a letter from Michelle Hammer that prompted this reply.
December 26, 2005: I still have not received bank statements for last couple of months. What the hell is going on with our accounts at Bank of America? Will closing ALL our accounts, including my brotherâs, with Bank of America be the best solution to this? I called Michelle Hammer at 714-792-5968 and left message asking for her fax number to fax this letter.
December 26, 2005: I called Bank of America and spoke to Lawrence of unit 20161. The agent was professional and promised to mail me the statements for last two months. I explained to him briefly why I was asking for this and about this letter. I was never informed of any charges/fees for this.
December 27, 2005: Michelle Hammer returned my call and provided a fax number 714-792-6671.
December 28, 2005: Bank of America charged me $ 8.00 for the statements requested above! Why should I pay for statements when this mess was caused by your bank in the first place? The bank leaves no room for unintentional human errors. It just wants its fees. I called of America again and spoke to Richard Garth of unit 20161. After exchanging a few words, he promised to credit my account the $ 8.00. I faxed this letter to Michelle Hammer hoping for a resolution in a timely manner.
In the mean time, Bank of America has once again grossly violated my privacy!
January 2, 2006: Bank of America illegally charged me a service charge on my credit card ending with âbbbbâ. They called it a âperiodic finance chargeâ. I have paid the previous balance in full and on time and there was no reason for this charge.
January 5, 2006: I called the bank and talked to an agent named Rick Jones and to a supervisor named Lakaisw Worklaws about this. They both informed me that there was a computer error and the bank was going through accounts and correcting them immediately. I asked them for contact info to report this to Bank of America. I was given the fax number 602-597-3346. I faxed a letter requesting an investigation of this âcomputer errorâ. I have not heard back from anyone at the bank to this day regarding this matter.
January 10, 2006: customer De Silva calls me again and states that my checking âyyyyâ account information is on her statement, again!
Here is the email she sent me:
Sender: username @juno.com
Date: Wed, 11 Jan 2006 01:10:09 GMT
X-Mailer: Webmail Version 4.0 â¦
IDIOT Bank of A has AGAIN sent me particulars of another account of yrs " Access Checking"
I spoke to several PERFECT IDIOTS [ customer Service] . Cannot communicate- Utterly , Utterly STUPID.
Only thig to do is YOU take that money & redeposit in to another account .
Specifying yr address .
HOW ON EARTH DID ALL YOUR ACCOUNTS COME IN TO MY STATEMENT ???
Cannot understand .
I cannot handle problems now. Get stressed out.
This should have never happened. No one needs to see my checking account details. Many many agents and officials of Bank of America have assured me that this problem was taken care of. But it is still there. How badly can Bank of America mess this up? It is criminal for the bank to do this. Is this white-collar crime?
The log continues â¦
January 10, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Lauren Harlan of unit 1580 and we exchanged some nasty words â typical of a bad business. She claims that there is nothing wrong with the way the account are set up. This is what Chris of unit 1580 said on November 23, 2005! There was no way to get this mess fixed. No one cared at Bank of America or would take personal responsibility of this and see it to the end. Since I have been lied to before, I called againâ¦
January 10, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Chris who told me that he cannot do anything. I was informed that the bank did not keep any record of customerâs calls regarding problems with accounts. So I have to explain the story all over again. This is not the way to keep records for a professional business. Since I have been lied to before, I called againâ¦
January 10, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Chris who told me that he
cannot do anything about it. There was no way to get this mess fixed. No one cared at Bank of America or would take personal responsibility of this and see it to the end, so I called againâ¦
January 10, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Derik Kaltenbach of unit 20161 who told me that he cannot do anything. No one cared at Bank of America or would take personal responsibility of this and see it to the end, so I called againâ¦
January 10, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Adrian Ariano of unit 20161 who told me that he cannot do anything. No one cared at Bank of America or would take personal responsibility of this and see it to the end, so I called againâ¦
January 10, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Andre of unit 1580 who told me that he cannot do anything. No one cared at Bank of America or would take personal responsibility of this and see it to the end, so I called againâ¦
January 10, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Enrique Rodriguez and customer support manager Erik Burns. He refused to admit that rules should apply equally to everyone. But I insisted and made him reverse an illegal fee the bank charged me before.
A week went by and the illegal âperiodic finance chargeâ was still on my credit card. So I called the bank againâ¦
January 12, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to an agent and insisted that the illegal charge on my credit card be removed. The amount was finally credited.
Here is my concern: if the bank knew about this computer error and was correcting the problem, why did I have to call twice, over a 10 day period and speak to 3 bank employees, including a supervisor, to resolve the problem? What if I have not noticed this âperiodic finance chargeâ? Many customers would have paid this illegal charge on their credit cards and the bank would have made millions by doing nothing about this âerrorâ which was called âperiodic finance chargeâ. Why would the bank ever bother to correct these errors on their own?
I was still not convinced that my checking account information is not on another customerâs statement.
January 12, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Jonathan Stall of unit 1580. We had a heated conversation and he threatened to close my checking account. I dared him to go ahead. How much can this bank screw me up? I told him to tape this conversation and send it to Michelle Hammer, Assistant Vice President.
January 12, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Karen Jones of unit 1580 who refused to transfer me to the survey, but transferred me to Vanessa Dibuduo. She too refused to transfer me to the survey and started to give me the run around.
I was still not convinced that my checking account information is not on another customerâs statement.
January 12, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Stephan Payton who behaved very unprofessionally. I told him to tape this conversation and send it to
Michelle Hammer, Assistant Vice President. He rudely said he cannot. I did not want to continue the conversation with this guy. So I called back againâ¦
January 12, 2006: I called Bank of America and spoke to Shawn Rollin. He said I should take my complaint to a banking center! Pass the buck? Why not? I got his fax number (559-451-8145) so I can fax all the details of this complaint, hoping someone will read it and do something about it. This fax number does not work!
January 12, 2006: I faxed this letter to and called Michelle Hammer at 714-792-5968 and asked her what she plans to do about this complaint.
January 21, 2006: I received a letter from Michelle Hammer saying that the matter is closed!!! Without resolving this continuing problem, Bank of America no longer wants to even discuss the mess they created. This is how banks treat their customers.
February 6, 2006: I received a reply from Attorney General's Office, Consumer Protection Division of North Carolina to contact the Comptroller of the Currency of the Department of the Treasury which is supposed to license and regulate national banks.
February 10, 2006: I received the statement for account âzzzzâ and customer De Silva was not receiving any statements, again! This is happening after many agents and officials of Bank of America, including Michelle Hammer has assured me in letters that the problems above have been resolved.
The log continues and so does the dishonest dealings of Bank of America.
It seems like some phone reps are so corrupt that they donât transfer you to the survey. How can the bank get honest feedback from your customers when the customer survey is doctored in this manner?
We really need strict laws to monitor the behavior of banks in this country. Banks should not be allowed to operate like criminal organizations and abuse customers under the protection of US law.
When banks operate with impunity
I am shocked to realize that there is very little or no regulation of banks such as Bank of America. These banks can do whatever they want to their customerâs accounts and their privacy and continue to operate with impunity. We should not sanction such criminal behavior. Where are the laws to protect consumers?
When customers over-draft a bit or go below the minimum balance on their checking accounts by unintentional human error, Bank of America jumps at the opportunity and ruthlessly charges them a ton of fees. It probably costs the bank about $ 5 but charges their customers $ 16 or more. This is because Bank of America understands only one language: money! All it cares is about charging us fees, fees and more fees. The bank leaves no room for unintentional human errors.
Bank of America abuses its customers and engages in dishonest business practices.
The bank has done irreparable damage to my privacy, seriously damaged the trust I had in the bank, causing a lot of aggravation and emotional distress to two customers.
The least Bank of America can do now is to pay me damages. The longer this bank takes to settle this issue, the more aggravation and emotional distress it causes me and I plan to seek even more damages.
I will not let Bank of America sweep this under the carpet.
I have written to Customer Assistance Group, Comptroller of the Currency, Department of the Treasury, 1301 McKinney Street, Suite 3710, Houstan, Texas 77010-9050 about this.