SYRACUSE, NEW YORK -- I was at a grocery store last night and went to check out and I always use my Master/debit card because I almost never carry cash. I generally use the Master/debit and hit credit so I don't have to pay any fees. Well, the cashier tells me my purchase is denied because I have a lost or stolen card.
So I call Citizens Savings Bank of Central NY this afternoon and it seems that another supermarket that I used to shop at about 5 years ago in a different town had their computer system compromised in February or March so they contacted the financial institutions of the credit card customers they had on file and the fraud department of Citizens Savings Bank of Central NY decided that they needed to send out all new cards to the compromised accounts card holders in mid March.
Well I told the customer service associate that I spoke to at 800-922-9999 that I never received a new card, nor any notification or even a simple phone call or email (funny but they never seem to have a problem sending emails to advertise their financial wares) so why on earth would they think that it was OK to just close my card yesterday with absolutely no notification? Well she danced around and tried all that mumbo jumbo gibberish that those types of associates are supposed to do and as a customer service associate myself, I recognized kept calling her on all her tactics. She kept insisting that they sent out a new card and notified me.
I informed the associate that “communication” is when they send out a notice and I respond or reply to them acknowledging that I received notification. If I don't receive notification nor do I respond then nothing has been communicated. (Period!) I told her if I had received such a notification in a timely manner I probably would not have had any problems with it but this is totally irresponsible and absolutely unacceptable for a financial institution to behave in this manner with absolutely no record of communication of any notification or acceptance of this procedure. To just randomly turn someone's card off???
I went on to tell her that I was at work and not getting out till after 7 pm. They have my money and I have no way to get to it, in my book that's pretty much the same thing as stealing or robbing from me regardless of what they think and quite frankly as a customer it is not my concern to care about what they think or not.
She says to me well we can overnight you a new card if you just give me the account number. So I say to her how am I supposed to give you an account number? I have a Master/Debit card that you closed? I don't carry checks with an account number on them because I didn't think I needed them. Indeed I haven't needed them for over 5 years! So she says to me well you can call us tonight when you get home with the account number. I say to her yes but if you overnight a card tonight then what? It'll get here Friday while I'm at work?
Or better yet maybe by Monday the next day that I have off? Guess I really don't need to eat or buy gas for the next four or five days huh? That's simply NOT acceptable! You see you have my money and I have no access to it. All I have is a card that you closed without out communicating that action to me and somewhere in Syracuse is a card which you claim you sent out that can access my account. Call me stupid but it sounds to me like someone has some explaining to do and it isn't me!
I want this card turned back on and I want it turned on NOW! If this supermarket computer system was compromised over a month ago and no one has hit my stupid sad little account by now I doubt they are going to. Well she did some more humming and hawing and I finally said to her look give me your name and transfer me to your supervisor we're finished. You're not hearing me and this is not acceptable.
So next I speak to ** who is supposedly some yada yada supervisor or someone with a title but who cares, someone else's title does not get me what I need now. And she says basically the same thing. So I tell her listen, you have my money and I don't and what's more with no branch accessible to me right now I have no access to it so that is basically tantamount to you stealing my money and I am more than prepared to go as public and as LOUDLY as I can with this regardless of whether it is resolved quickly or not.
Your company messed up. You never communicated this process to me because you never confirmed any such notification. What I want to hear right now is that you are going to turn this card back on and that's that, not really anything else I want to hear from you at this time.
Then she used the “policy” word and some crap about having x number of account members yada yada, so I calmly said to her. OK lesson #1 in any customer service transaction never and I mean NEVER use a phrase like “our policy” unless you want your butt handed back to you because no customer gives two hoots about your policy or if you have one. And secondly, I don't care if you have all 46 billion of America as your customers it maters nothing to me all that matters to me is “ME.”
Finally I tell this woman, I need to speak to her supervisor. She tells me there isn't one and I tell her that I find it hard to believe that someone who is as ineffectual as she seems to be is the final authority on anything. Then she tells me that her supervisor is only a personnel supervisor and deals with only personnel issues. I came dangerously close to telling her well she obviously has a personnel issue on her hands that she doesn't know about because you are fairly terrible at your job.
Then this ** person gives me some crap about the only supervisor over her that I can speak to about my problem is a regional supervisor or a branch manager??? Huh??? I find it nearly impossible to believe that a branch manager in god knows where can solve my problem. However, when I question her for access numbers and names for these people she fails to give me the information.
I'm sorry but these accounts will be closed as soon as I can manage the transfer. Or better yet I might just leave them open with a couple dollars on deposit so the bank will continue to waste their resources to manage that couple of dollars. Now aside from searching for major complaining spots online to blast Citizens Savings Bank of Central NY and writing to the newspaper editorials what other recourse is there? Do I need to contact NYSBD? The NY state Attorney General?
the bank came to as acceptible a resolution as they could offer.
I wish I could give a zero as a review. Unfortunately that is not the case so this bank is getting a one by default. This institution is a blood sucking, un-flexible bank that thrives off its customers by all means necessary. They charge outrageous fees and customer service supports these fees with the statement "we are supported by the federal government." With such economic hardships visible right in front of our eyes, this bank takes advantage of its customers and refuses to return any money to its customers.
I recently received bank fees in the amount of $258 for 7 charges of 1.99. I was told by the customer service representative that this was a fair practice... LOL In all my years of banking... TD, Wachovia and Bank of America would all return the fee considering it was under 2 dollars. At least one time. And under the circumstances (that my mother just died). These leeches actually became ruder and ruder as I spoke to representative after rep... And I have never requested the bank return any fees to me until this point (I am not a habitual offender) LOL not that they care or it makes any difference to them...
Not to mention that this bank reorganizes charges in order to bounce items. I have been with this bank for about one year. I check my account every Tuesday at midnight before payday. Somehow most items manage to bounce in an order that forces you to have the most overdraft fees possible.
For example: If you had a balance of 50 dollars and you had debts for 2.00, 7.00, 15.00, 1.99, 10.00 and 40.00, instead of the bank charging all the little charges, it will process the large charge first. So that you account overdrafts for an excessive amount instead of once or twice. When I questioned them about this I couldn't get a clear answer. The representative just laughed. My recommendation Go with Wachovia or any other bank for that matter. Just stay as far away from these guys as possible!!!
RIVERSIDE, RHODE ISLAND -- I have an ongoing problem with Citizens Bank gift cards. The bottom line is this: they cancelled my two active gift card before their expiration date, but they continued to charge me a monthly 'service charge' for these cards, cards which were no longer in service. When I complained, they refused to reimburse me for service charges on the out of service cards. Doesn't a service charge mean that you are paying for a service? If Citizens cancelled the service (i.e. use of the gift cards), how can the service fee continue to be charged?
I am just as angry about the very poor way I have been treated. Citizens could have made it easy to find out that the cards had been deactivated, but they did not. I used the card and it didn't go through at one business. Odd I thought, so I tried a second time, different place, a few weeks later. Still no luck. I went to the citizensbankgiftcard.com website, typed in my card info, and all looked fine (i.e. there was money on the cards).
Figuring my website verification might have activated something on my cards, a few weeks later I tried a purchase again, and still no luck. I tried the 800#. There was no option to talk to an operator, and pressing 0 did nothing, but I keyed in my card info, and the system said there was money on the cards. I shopped again. No luck again. Back to the 800# to do the optional card registration, figuring this might solve my problem. I was surprised that this option leads to a human operator, who told me that citizens had cancelled the cards.
I was sent checks for the card balance LESS card service charges. The 800# person gave me a Massachusetts Citizens bank address to write to for service charge reimbursement. I wrote. Citizens ignored my letter. They didn't even respond! Am I not worthy of a response? I emailed Citizens customer service. They said they couldn't help me, but gave me an address, this time in Atlanta, to send yet another letter to. I did so. Once again, I never got a response! I am pretty shocked at this. Is this the practice now, to just ignore letters from customers? I wrote to the places Citizens told me to write to, and they just ignored me.
I didn't give up though. I wrote to the head of Citizens at their Providence HQ and I actually, finally, got a response. It was a short letter saying that Citizens was just following service charge policy as outlined in the gift card rules they had attached to the letter. They presented no justification for charging a service charge for cards that they had taken out of service, nor did their gift card rules address this situation.
What I felt even more disappointed about was that Citizens HQ did not offer one word of apology for ignoring both of my previous letters, when I had sent those letters to the very people Citizens told me to contact in order to resolve this issue. Ignoring a customer letter once is bad enough, but twice is pretty rotten, and then failing to apologize when I told them about this says to me that the people at Citizens HQ care very little about their customers.
I know I share blame, as service charges don't start until the "13th month after issuance". I got the two $300 giftcards from my siblings. It was their way of thanking me for taking care of our 92 year-old mother as she needed 24/7 care, and my job had been outsourced to India, so I had time to do so. To be honest I felt guilty taking money from my siblings to take care of our mother so I just had a hard time using the gift cards. Weird, I know, but it didn't sit right with me. I did use one of the cards once, but after that I just put them aside.
I lost $45 in service charges ($2.50/mo for 9 months, on two cards). The 800# person told me that Citizens cancelled the cards on 6/3/2009, and I got my check, less service fees, in December 2009. Of the nine months of service fees, 3 months were while the card was active, and 6 months (June through December) are service charges on cards that had been put out of service. Those service fees bought me nothing but bad service!
They made it so difficult even to find out why my cards were suddenly not working, and they expect me to pay them service fees for all this aggravation. It is beyond belief to me that Citizens would, when I have repeatedly presented them with these facts, all the way up to the very top of the corporation, would not make things right. I am really very surprised how little they care about doing the right thing for their customers, and it is obvious that this poor attitude is prevalent at the very top of the corporate ladder. I am left to again ponder the question in Citizens online ads: “Is this how you define a good bank?”
I wish I had read these reviews before I gave them 15 years worth of Mortgage Interest. Let me start by stating that I was 18 when I opened my first checking account with Baybank (now Citizens Bank) and have had some issues in the past but not enough to make me leave. I married and my husband and I have had a joint checking account and savings with them for our entire 18 year marriage. We have direct deposit of our income and I use the online banking almost daily. We took out a home equity loan and then last year paid off this loan with a full mortgage refinancing through them.
Having the Home Equity load qualified me for gold checking with free checking and overdraft. Little did I know that CCO Mortgage (Citizens Bank) was 'not the same company' even though I went to their branch office and did all the paperwork off their letterhead. This means I was no longer a gold member but no one informed me of this. About 5 months ago, out of the blue, they started charging me $17.50 a month service fees. When I asked why, they stated the above and that I was no longer in "fee free" status.
Having used the Automatic payments on line to set up every bill I pay (to get the Green Fee Rewards), I requested my mortgage be withdrawn from my account on the 12th of the month, knowing that my paychecks would be in that day. They paid CCO Mortgage with a hard check mailing it out on the 10th and cashing said check on the 11th, a day early causing a $37 fee overdraft of my account.
They then proceeded to charge two additional fees of $37 for a total of $111 for a $5.95 debit and a $17 Debit because "They can clear all the day's charges in whatever order they wish." REALLY??? Bunch of rip off artists. When I called and told them that the check was requested to be withdrawn on the 12th I was told that they clear checks when requested and that the date on my check and/or the date of my automatic payment request mean nothing.
They do not take this into consideration and since this was not Fraud or a bank error, they would not consider reimbursing me any fees. I then asked about the $17.50 checking fee to see what they would say. I was told that I only needed to ask that my mortgage be tied into my checking and then I would be eligible once again for the free checking and the Gold Member (which has overdraft protection). So I asked why I was not given this automatically as a service without having to ask for it and was told that they do not offer it, only give it when requested but that she would reimburse me up to two months worth of fees or $35. BIG WHOOP.
I paid $17.50 for 6 months and was charged $111 and the supervisor acted as though she were doing me a favor by giving me the $35 back. What a joke this bank is not to mention the hours on the phone I spent talking reps and supervisors, all who gave me the same generic answer. One pimple faced kid "supervisor" even told me he knows how I feel. This was not the right thing to say to the recently unemployed mother of two who was just screwed out of several hundred dollars.
Boy did he get an earful for saying that! Sorry ** but perhaps you will not say that to another customer unless you truly do get it! I will be taking my business elsewhere to one of several smaller banks in my area who come highly recommended. No wonder why big banks are in trouble! Maybe everyone on this feed should consider filing a 93A Action against them to see who they feel getting charged triple damages like most of us have!
BENNINGTON, VERMONT -- On October 2, 2009 My Social Security Disability direct deposit hit my checking account. On this same day a check that was reported to be lost from my old landlord in March (which I replaced with a bank check) was cashed. I only found this out when I needed to get more insulin (I'm a type 1 diabetic and I have Secondary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis). Well I couldn't get my insulin because I my account was overdrawn. I called the automated system and found out that my old landlord had cashed this stale check.
I called claims and told them about it, and dealt with my local branch of citizens and the claim department. I was charged $681 dollars for bouncing the checks that I had out there, and for being over drawn. They would not even refund me the money for my insulin. Now this all happened 5 weeks ago, and I got smart today and called the Bennington VT Citizens and asked them there policy on cashing a stale dated check, I was told that they wouldn't cash a stale dated check at all, if it was over 6 months old it would not be cashed. This customer service representative even checked with other tellers and was told the same thing.
So now I called the claims department figuring that I was actually helping them out. I was told that someone else was now handling my claim. When I spoke to him he told me that he couldn't tell me anything because he had just received a letter from the OCC today that I had filed weeks ago, and I would have to wait until the middle of next week for his letter to get to me. I was so mad. Now all of this stress has caused me to go into an acute flair with my MS and then I had a reaction to the Solu-medrol and was hospitalized for three days (just got out today).
Well I decided to call back the Bennington VT Citizens for some more clarification. I spoke with the branch manager and he actually told me that he knew the person who cashed the check (MY old landlord that I have not rented from in 3 months I might add). So I asked him if he cashed the check himself and he said no he didn't. I told him what his teller told me about not excepting a stale check, and he told me she was new at her job, so she wouldn't know all of the rules, well apparently all of their tellers are new, because she verified her information with the other tellers and they all said that they would not honor a stale check especially a stale check that was a starter check.
Funny how the Branch manager can contradict what his own personnel say and do. SOMETHING FUNNY GOING ON HERE! Well needless to say this check has caused me a lot of trouble. I have had 2 trips to the ER, 4 new medications, and then I had 3 days of Intense Solu-Medrul infusions, including having a bad reaction to the first round.
I'm not even out of the flair yet, so more is probably on the way the beginning of next week, not to mention the infusions wreak havoc on the diabetes and kidneys. So far this fiasco has caused me over $8900 in hospital fees in addition to the money that the bank has charged me. But I still can't get over how the Bank Manager in Bennington VT knows my old landlord, and knew to tell him that he could cash the check, and he would look the other way.
I wouldn't do business with this bank. Their commercials show them going out of their way for there customers, but I find that they go out of their way to make money everywhere they can, even if it means taking advantage of the disabled, and basically stealing their Social Security Disability funds that are supposed to be used for housing and feeding their families. DO NOT DO BUSINESS WITH CITIZENS BANK. THEY WILL ONLY STEAL YOUR MONEY ANYWAY THEY CAN. PLEASE THINK TWICE!
DERBY, NEW YORK -- I have been a banker with Citizens Bank for over 5 years. Today I have been robbed of over $300 from this pathetic excuse of an institution! I balance my checkbook daily and have done so in order of when purchases and charges and checks are made. Today I went to check on my account online and found that I was over drawn over $150. I had a balance of $4.35 this past Monday. I had also made 2 deposits on that day in the amount of $350 total. I check my account daily and have done so all week waiting for the deposits to clear.
Today when I saw the over draft charges I called them to see what had happened. I was informed that a check was cashed that day at the end of business for $50. I was aware of this payment and knew I would have an overdraft fee. They took that payment and put it ahead of every other thing that had already gone through that day causing me 4 over draft charges! And that made my account completely off from what it should have been.
The checks I deposited cleared and I covered the charges but the new charges on my account caused my account to overdraft again. I am divorced mother of 3 and have very limited resources and they have stolen my money! I will be writing reviews on every available website and newspaper until everyone knows not to bank with them...
They informed me that it is their policy and they are not willing to work with me even though I have been a customer for over 5 years... I have direct deposit so I will be losing my pay for this week and will then empty the account and open a new one at another bank or credit union because after my research today I have found that credit unions are the least likely to steal money from you.
NEW HAMPSHIRE -- I have also had problems with Citizens Bank. On October 2, 2009 I received my Social Security Direct Deposit. Also on that date there was a check from 7 months ago that was cashed by the bank. This check was to an old landlord that I used to have, and way back he told me that he never received this check, so I stopped payment on the check and got a bank check for the money and sent that on to him.
Now after 7 months he managed to cash the check. The bank never called me to tell me that a “stale Check” was being cashed, and I didn't know that “stop payments” were only good for 6 months, so the bank paid out this “old check”. Now because this happened and I didn't know about it, it overdrew my account and I bounced a bunch of other checks. It was only after calling customer service that I found out that “stop payments” were only good for six months and that the bank shouldn't have cashed this “stale check”, but I was told that it was up to the bans discretion.
Now the fees that came in due to this amounted to more than $900. I was frantic. I got hit with fees on top of fees. My wife's direct deposit ended up going into our account before we could stop it, and it paid all of their fees off and left us very little money for food to feed our family of 5.
Also during this time I was running out of Insulin (I am a type 1 diabetic) and I also have Secondary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis. Well I needed Insulin for my pump and the bank refused to free up any of the charges that they had on our account. I ended up having an MS flair twice and ended up in the ER. I also received 2 prescriptions that needed to be filled in order to get over this flair.
I called the bank and a very nice customer service representative named ** helped me out and freed up $78 so that I could get the prescriptions filled, and then when I went to the bank I was told that I could not take the money out because citizens had put a hold on my account and the one person who could take the hold off was not in that day. I was then escorted out of the bank and was told that Corporate Security was going to be I would not get back any of the fees that I have paid if she had anything to do with it.
I then contacted customer service and lodged a complaint with them. Next thing I know the claims department is sending me another affidavit in the mail, and this time they want me to try to locate my old landlord so that he can sign it saying that he did in fact take money from our account. Can you believe that? I'm sure he'll sign that, right?
I was told by Citizens Bank that I can not close my account at this point because it is now back to being negative again, and when I tried to open another account with a different bank I was notified that because of Citizens Bank I would have to wait for that account to be settled before I can open another account anywhere else.
So now my wife is stopping her direct deposit and I have to call Social Security in order for them to stop their direct deposit. I'm thinking about not having a bank account at all, I'm thinking about getting a safe, and then just getting money orders for all of my bills. Thank you CITIZEN'S BANK for encouraging me to not trust banks!
I worked for Citizens in PA for almost 2 years. **, the Bucks County Regional Manager, pushes OD fees EXACTLY as described in many posts. We were forced to open checking accounts that had excessive overdraft fees and monthly charges in order to ripoff the customers. Here's how: We had to open accounts, lying to the customers that the account has "no fees", and put specifically designed waivers on the accounts so that the customer doesn't realize the scam (the maximum waiver you could use was for 1 year)...
Then, when the waiver expires months later, the customers have their guard down and they don't obsess with every line on their statements, they get hit by monthly fees that will overdraw the account (as most people keep in their checking account only enough money to cover their checks - that's why it's called a CHECKING account). The overdraft fees will overdraw the account again and again and so will the checks you write believing that your account is still good.
I routinely had customers with hundreds of dollars in fees by the time they received their statement - we were specifically instructed to hit high school kids, college students and senior citizens. Another trick we had to use is open a "Gold" checking account to senior citizens who would come in and ask for a savings account by using a high interest rate as a carrot and not disclosing the fees (using the waivers as noted above). Problem is, that "Gold" checking account had a high-balance requirement and the poor people would be hit by unnecessary monthly fees a few months later...
And to add insult to injury we even had telemarketing days and evenings when we were forced to make telemarketing calls (disguised as "service calls" so that the bank circumvents the do-not-call registry laws). Not only these were clearly marketing calls (as suggested by the program feeding us the leads!!!) but also we had to open a number of checking accounts over the phone (the daily and weekly targets were set by Fran again, the Regional Manager).
If only homeland security knew how many checking accounts Citizens Bank routinely opens over the phone without proper identification or signatures... all the auditors have to do is go to any Bucks County branch towards the end of the day and ask for the signature cards of the checking accounts opened the SAME day to uncover the illegal practice (this way there is no time to mail the signature card and obtain backdated signatures)... Stay away from Citizens Bank in PA! I quit several years ago and I am still haunted about the things we had to do...
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS -- It's beyond me how they continually get away with these practices of re-shuffling balances and postings to justify charging more fees. Just recently they have done again. On June 1st, my balance was a positive actual and a positive available. I then proceed to make an ATM withdrawal, and even after my balances were still reflected as positive.
The next day, after 3 transactions, and mind you they were all posted and still reflected positive balances... They charge me $117, for what they are saying is (3) negative transactions, because my card had been run through for authorization, which in turn caused the last three transactions to be negative available balances. Then 24 hours later, the post the transaction from the previous days authorization and charge me another $39.
When I called to talk to customer service, they gave me an explanation that still has my head spinning. They said that on June 1st when the card was run through for authorization, the pull that amount of money out and hold it for that pending transaction, which in turn, cause those other (3) transactions to be negative, therefore assessing me $117 for the fees. But yet, 24 hours later, they post the transaction that they said they pulled the money for previously, and charged another $39. But if they pulled the money previously and it was available at that time, why am I being charged?
They contradicted themselves when I called to inquire and they won't refund me any fees, they say it's bank policy and I am the one that should keep better track of my account. It's a rip-off and then they structure the transactions to justify it.
Steer clear of this bank... They will rip you off every chance they get, and even when you think you've got it figured in, they will manipulate the transactions and justify they're ripping you off.
MANCHESTER, NEW HAMPSHIRE -- I have had so many problems with over draft fees the past 2 years. Out of the about 20 I received probably only 2 of them were my fault. Here are some of the examples. On Friday 3 small purchases went through and the money was in my account and then on Monday a charge purchase came through. On Tuesday I saw that my account had 4 over draft fees!!! After sitting and talking with the Branch Manager for over 45 minutes still what she told me made no sense.
Apparently even though the charge did not go through until Monday Citizens Bank told me your money is put on hold. So on Friday even though my statement online told me the money was there they said it wasn't. So not only did I get 3 over draft fees for Friday but then on Monday for the same charge again they charged my account another overdraft fee because now there wasn't enough money to cover it!!!
That's $156 in over draft fees. Oh by the way as a courtesy they did give me back 1 fee $39. Here is another example. I ordered Chinese food from a restaurant. The clerk put my card through twice while I was standing there. She took it off my card and handed me the receipt.
Thinking this would cause a problem with the bank I personally went into the Bank and talked with the Assistant Manager. I saw that the Chinese Food charge had not gone through but also Chinese food refund had not gone through either. I wanted to make sure that I would not be over drafted so the Assistant told me to make a deposit in X amount of dollars and I would be fine.
Yeah right!!! The next day I checked my bank and bang!!! 2 more over draft fees. I was so angry I went back down to the bank to talk to the Assistant again who was very rude!!! He told me it was not the bank's fault even though he told me everything would be alright.
I finally asked to talk to the Branch Manager who I could tell wanted nothing to do with it. He went into her office and she slammed the door. I could hear them yelling at each other. Finally he comes out and tells me she'd see me in a minute. 20 minutes later she called me into her office and said that I would have to fill out an affidavit to the Chinese restaurant even though the refund was given because I had the receipt.
When I started to tell her about what the Assistant and I discussed she wanted no part of it and said it wasn't a bank error so they were not going to refund my money. So again I was out $78. I also would like to mention that the dates on debits and charges change all the time so the bank got you so screwed up and that's what they want so they can take your money.
How is it fair that Citizens Bank practice this way? How can my online banking page to my account be different from theirs? It's robbery if you ask me. I have finally had it and am switching banks. I hope something can be done about this so people don't keep getting robbed.