U. S. Bank Complaint - Negative Balance Fee . . . A Hidden Nightmare
MEDFORD, OREGON -- We opened a checking account with U.S. Bank using their website. I electronically transferred the minimum required funds into the account and ordered my checks. I subsequently decided to hold off using the account while I dealt with auto-deposit and Bill Pay issues with my existing bank. At no time during the process of opening the account was it made clear that I would be assessed a daily "negative balance" fee of $7.00 if the account balance were to drop below zero for reasons other than a check or debit card transaction. I'm certain that they do provide notice in the fine print, but it is not placed such that consumers would notice or understand what it means. I consider myself a fairly intelligent person and I did not notice it. If I had, I would not have done business with them.
On with the story . . .
From the time the checking account was opened the only activity was the initial deposit and the monthly service fees assessed by U.S. Bank. No checks or debit card transactions of any kind were posted against the account.
After a number of months, the monthly service fees ate up the initial deposit and put the account into the red. On that very day, U.S. Bank began assessing a $7.00 per day "negative balance" fee. Thankfully, my wife and I caught that within a week of when it started. Still, with no activity, and therefore no transactions to deal with, the bank would still charge us $210 per month until the account is closed. Now here's the catch . . . they won't close the account until you pay the accrued "negative balance" fees. They will NOT waive the fees. Even if you never wrote a single check on the account! So much for the so-called Five Star service!
We ask ourselves "What if we had moved? What if we were out of the country for many months? We would have been accruing "negative balance" fees at the rate of $210 per month! What a shock that would be if you then found out a YEAR later when you then owed them over $2500 and never wrote a single check!
Don't do business with these folks!