EBENSBURG, PENNSYLVANIA -- Long story. Their mistake but were reluctant to do anything. And lied to me. My unemployment goes into an account that I have a debit card for. My only access to the money is by using the debit card or paying extra to do an online transfer to a bank. I wanted to pay off a 0% cc loan that was about to expire. I had a few grand in my checking account and I had about $4500 in my unemployment account. On April 23rd I went to the bank to get a $3000 cash advance to deposit into my checking account so I could pay the cc off.
When the teller swiped the card the machine malfunctioned (she didn't tell me that). She processed the transaction again and it was declined. I thought maybe there is a limit, try $2000. It was declined again. I said try $1000. The $1000 transaction was approved. When I got home I checked to see if there was a limit and found that there was in fact no withdrawal limit. But I also saw a pending pre-authorization on my account for $3000.
I called the company and asked why the pending transaction if it was declined. They said it was not declined, that the amount was approved when the request was made. I knew that in order to get the pending removed I would need the bank to send a letter telling them they were not going to finalize the transaction. I asked the guy if there was another alternative other than waiting 5 to 10 days, he said no. Next day, April 24th, I went to the bank and explained to the teller that there was a pending transaction for the $3000 and they needed to send a letter to the bank. I provided a copy of my statement showing the pending transaction.
I thought it would be a simple request because I knew the procedure. (It happened to me once at the post office. They said I had to swipe my card again and there were actually 2 transactions for the same amount. I did let that one go for 5 days.) They had no idea what to do so they were going to send it to someone else and let me know what they found out. I never received a call so I just waited. 5 days and it was still there. 10 days and it was still there.
I called the company and found out what really happened. They told me she had swiped the card twice and the first time got approved, the second was declined because the first was approved and there was not enough money for the second request. The 3rd attempt was declined because the first was approved. The 4th attempt was approved because there was still enough money in the account. She also said anything over $250 would remain for 30 days unless the bank sent a letter. And she said the matter could be resolved in a few hours if they would just fax a letter. I went to the bank and asked them what was being done.
They said nothing was being done because when they forwarded the matter no one had ever heard of anything like that and that they could not send a letter because they did not have any record of the transaction. I said if you have no record then what will it hurt to send a letter to that effect and tell them it won't be processed. I got them to call someone and in the phone conversation that is when she said she swiped the card and the machine malfunctioned. But in all the people she talked to, she never told them what needed to be done. She just asked if they should do anything to get the funds released.
But they still said they had never had to send any correspondence like that. Their risk dept. didn't have any idea. I made a small scene in the bank at Walmart and they said someone would call me that afternoon. I went straight home and called the account company back and spoke with them again and they assured me there was nothing I could do, the bank had to do it. I called the banks main CS in Houston and talked to about 3 people and a CS supervisor told me that someone in risk was taking care of it and it would be done within the hour.
The branch manager called and I explained to him that I had called CS and he said he would call and make sure I was told correctly. Well, the next morning the transaction was still there. I was hot. I called the account company and they said they had received no letter. I called the banks CS and went through about 3 people and no one knew what the hell was going on. I finally got a CS supervisor that told me that she had spoken to someone in risk and that the letter had been faxed in that morning (18 hours later than they said they were going to) and that they had received a confirmation of the fax.
I told them I wanted a copy of the letter faxed to the bank so I could pick it up. I never got to speak to anyone in risk at any point. I am the customer, shouldn't they deal with me if they are offering customer service? They can't even give you a direct call back number, you have to start everything from the automated process. I called the company back and got to the head person on duty on the phone and she told me the fax number I was given was for the Texas office and that she was in Harrisburg, Pa. So she could not verify receipt of the fax.
I told her I was going to get a copy of the letter and would she accept it if I faxed it in. She said yes. She was very accommodating and said that if she saw the money post to my account before the end of the day she would call me. I told her I would get the letter but would wait until morning before I got back to her. I went to the bank about 4 hours later to pick up the letter and no one knew a thing. After about 15 minutes they finally came up with the letter from an email. I brought the letter home and waited. The next morning the money was back in my account showing a transaction reversal.
So after 12 days and only two extra blood pressure pills I got my money back. The people at the bank did not seem at all concerned that I would have to wait 30 days to get my money even though it was their machine that malfunctioned and caused the whole ordeal. Hell, I guess all their account holders have an extra 3 grand to throw away for a month.
The lady at the account company said it is a very common thing to happen and that she has had a few banks refuse to send a letter, and those banks did complete the transaction 90% of the time. But she has never known of a bank that has never had it happen and did not know what the procedure was to rectify the situation. I think the bank was just stalling with the whole thing. They said they made a one-time exception just for me.
I know this was just one incident with the bank; but the way it was (or should I say wasn't) handled and the several times they lied to me about what was being done and the total lack of communication is just not the way customer service should be provided. Especially for a financial institution. I told the teller, I normally keep a few thou in there but since they messed up, all that money was now gone from the account and I will make damn sure that there was never any money in that account again. I don't think they really care.
HOUSTON, TEXAS -- I must say that I have dealt with a lot of banks before we were a moving family due to my family's job. I have had many times that I would be frustrated at other banks and they acted as though they did not care. I have to say that WFNB has always put forth extra effort to help me and my family. To be really open we even went through a time where we could not afford to fix the mess we had in the account.
2 years after we left them and walked away due to finances (which we had never done before). We went in and they helped not only take care of the charge off they allowed us to open another account. I must say they have won my business. I am certain that everyone has good and bad experiences, but thank you to those that helped me and mine.
CINCINNATI, OHIO -- Woodforest does not care about you or your security, the only thing they do care about is your money and how they can keep it. A few month after opening my account I noticed a fraudulent charge pending on my account for $35.00. I went to my local office to take care of it immediately; however, they told me there is nothing they can do about it. They refused to do anything about the fraudulent charge until it posted to the account. As a result, the charge posted for $35.00, and sent my account into the negatives.
On top of that, the two legitimate transactions I made did not post until after the fraudulent charge posted, even though they were made four to five days beforehand. This resulted in $105 in overdraft fees due to a fraudulent charge that they allowed to post. On top of that, they charged me $12.00 to cancel the debit card so there would be no more fraudulent transactions.
In just over a few months, I have noticed Woodforest often rearranges the way transactions post in an effort to overdraft your account. For example, if you have 20 transactions for $5.00 and one transaction for $500 that happened 5 days later, they will post the $500 dollar transaction first so that you have 20 overdrafts.
On top of that, they often wait until you have no money in your account to charge you any monthly fees. I often have little money in my account after the first of the month due to paying all of my bills. Yet, I always leave enough to cover the service fees. Yet, they will not withdraw them on the same day every month. Instead, they wait until your account balance is less than that of the service fee so that they can hit you with an overdraft fee on top of the service fee.
They will also hold your deposits for a long time. I have seen cash deposits left in the night drop take days to post, and if my girlfriend or father deposit money into my account it will take over a week to post to my available balance. It makes it difficult when my girlfriend is putting her half of the rent in my account or my dad is loaning me money from two states away by putting CASH into my account, yet I cannot use it for a week or more. I highly recommend avoiding this bank. Despite their convenient hours, they will find some way to screw you over and make you out to blame.
Since this bank is only located in Wal-Mart, then I suggest just using Wal-Mart to cash your check and get one of their re-loadable Visa cards. You will save yourself lots of headaches, frustration, and money in the end.
PEARLAND, TEXAS -- Do Not use their ATM's! I have been with Woodforest for about 3 years. Recently I went to a Woodforest drive through ATM and requested $240.00. The money came out and sucked right back in... Although it is an internal dispute I was told I had to get a new ATM card and it would take up to 10 days to receive MY money. Although they are in "business" 7 days a week they really meant 14 days. I went to the bank on the 10th day and they had not even started to work on getting my money... they would wait the entire 14 days to complete this internal transaction... even though the ATM is reconciled every 24 hours.
The customer service line repeatedly hung up on me... repeatedly giving everyone that answered the phone the same info over and over for days. I wrote my rent check which I was charged $34.00 for... I need a place to live. On the 13th day I took $20.00 from the ATM as I couldn't have made it to work otherwise. I was denied my dispute... they have a video! I called the retarded customer service line and asked to speak to a supervisor... hung up on again.
I was told to write a request to view the video... then twice the supervisors gave me wrong fax numbers to send it to... yep late for work. And now I have to wait, they won't even tell me if it will be 10 days... oops 14 or what. They have no video of me receiving the money. They are thieves and have put me on the financial edge. Can I file a police report for theft? Because these crooks owe me $308.00 right now. And when you call their "Customer service" when you ask who you're talking to they give you a first name and the next time you call no one has ever heard of them. How can I get these inept fools fired? HELP!
I give up
HANOVER, PENNSYLVANIA -- Woodforest bank is the worst bank I have ever dealt with. I will be closing my account there just as soon as my 6 months is up in April to avoid their "early close penalty". The branches are located ONLY in Wal-Mart stores and the tellers and managers I have worked with to address my complaint are about as bright as the Wal-Mart cashiers who can't add. Woodforest has so many policies in place that it makes normal banking extremely difficult for the average American consumer, trust me when I tell you this, AVOID WOODFOREST! WOODFOREST IS MESSED UP! DO NOT OPEN AN ACCOUNT WITH WOODFOREST! IF YOU DO YOU WILL BE SO SORRY!!!
They place unreal hold times on deposits and they have policies about depositing checks that every other bank I have ever used would not do to you. If this is the future of banking then we are all in big trouble. No coincidence they are all in Wal-Mart stores, Wal-Mart SECRETLY OWNS THE COMPANY THAT CONTROLS WOODFOREST!!!
HOUSTON, TEXAS -- I really hate this bank!! The worst bank ever! Every time I would go to deposit a check, they needed a manager for an override. And half the time there was never a manager to be found! Then they have to call around to other Woodforest branches till they find someone with override authorization. This process holds up the line and makes me late for work! I have even had checks put on hold for up to 14 business days!! I could see the reason for this if I was a hot check writer. But I have never bounced a check ever! And I have plenty of money in my account.
They tell me I can take the check to the bank it's drawn off of. And have it cashed there, and then bring the cash back to deposit. WHAT??? If I am going to go to that much trouble, I am just going to open an account at that bank!! These checks I deposit are not even over 600.00. The tellers are usually really rude. And I had to deal with the regional VP at one time. I quickly found out that she was just a woman on a power trip! She treated me like a piece of gum she had just stepped in. I am not one to complain. I know how to treat people!
When you work in, or have worked in, customer service, you tend to be more patient with people. I would rather climb through razor wire, with my hair on fire and put my money in a coffee can and bury it under a fire ant bed in my back yard before I would even consider putting it back in Woodforest National "so called" Bank. I wouldn't recommend this bank to anyone. In fact, when clients ask me about banks, I tell them how pathetic this bank is. And sometimes I even go into the whole "razor wire, ant bed spiel". Then I recommend my bank.
GREENVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA -- I opened a new account with WoodForest National Bank after moving to a new state. 26 days later I tried cashing a Massachusetts child support check and they told me there would be a 14 day hold on it! I asked "why?" They said they only cash government checks directly from "under 30 day old accounts". Well, It IS a government check! I ended up walking to the Walmart Customer Service desk and THEY cashed the check for $3.00. They are constantly rude there and NO ONE knows what they are doing.
My son sent me a bank order a week after I opened the account and they wouldn't even cash THAT until I insisted they call the bank to verify it. My direct deposits are being canceled and sent to a REAL bank. I look forward to the day when WoodForest goes under because of their lack of service that drives people away!
I have been with Woodforest National Bank since 2001 and have never had a problem. They really go out of their way to take care of my every need. Sometimes a deposit is late getting to them through the mail system and when I inquire they take the time to keep me updated with phone calls and process deposits immediately. When I do go into the bank I am met with friendly and prompt service. I trust this bank and I'm completely satisfied and wouldn't think of using another bank.
HOUSTON, TEXAS -- First of all, when you are depositing a large check and Woodforest wants to put it on hold the reasons are as follows: Either you don't have enough in the account to cover the check if it were to charge-back (because you don't know if the check is really good or not and neither does Woodforest) or it is a new check presented to the account. Whenever Woodforest needs an over-ride, we do not call a manager always. It is because new tellers have certain limits to ensure they do their job correctly and efficiently and they have to check certain things about the account.
Everyone has a different limit, it is there to protect you and the bank so that people don't write 9,000.00 Dollar checks and get away with it. Woodforest does have depository ATMs but they are not on every single corner. Yes some of the tellers are young but they are trained very thoroughly and when we make a mistake the teller will always fix them or go to someone higher for advice about a decision. I used to work for Woodforest and Woodforest is a very understanding and great bank. There are 24 hour locations in Texas.
OHIO -- Woodforest National Bank is amazing. They always have a friendly smiling staff that is eager to help. TRY getting that at any of the super-sized banks. Those tellers are so snotty. They treat people like they are bothering them. Excuse me for interrupting your personal conversation. I only wanted to cash my check that I worked really hard all week for. Woodforest also cares enough to stay open when other banks won't I am sure those other banks throw some pretty amazing "Columbus Day Parties". Pay close attention TRADITIONAL BANKS. Real people work most government holidays! It's nice to have a bank like Woodforest that cares about REAL people!