Washington Mutual Informative - Washington Mutual Staff Gave Wrong Advice Several Times Causing Big Problems
MIAMI, FLORIDA -- Washington Mutual sells MONEY ORDERS. That is not the problem, the problem is that they do not back them up, it's a company from Colorado which backs up the money orders.
You better believe that - I found it out when I used one I had from a few years ago, to use as emergency money. I paid partly in cash and with a Washington Mutual money order to buy a vehicle.
Bank of America accepted the money order until Washington Mutual refused to honor it. Now I was facing a big financial loss. The seller had nighmares done to his credit and his accounts, we were both in financial hell. Quickly, I went to
WaMu and was surprised to be told to call the State of Florida, that WaMu had sent the money there as the money order had not been cashed. I am a weekly customer, with automatic deposit of salary check, why wasn't I contacted rather than the state? That time I was refused talking to the manager but the staff member informed me to call the state office which keeps unclaimed funds and when I did - TreasureHunt reported not having the funds.
After weeks of no info, I returned to the branch where I had originally bought the money orders. This time the manager was available. A few of her questions surprised me - such as asking me if I had ever had an account with them, the answer being yes, as long as they have been on the east coast. For about 2 hours, between other duties, she made phone calls using only her first name to numbers she gathered on her computer. Then she told me to get a lawyer, WAMU could not redeem the eschewed money orders. I asked her to please identify herself as a bank officer as it had more influence than my making more dead-end phone calls, which she finally did when we were approaching 3 hours of refusals.
It helped, of course it helped, she got someone to ask her to fax copies of the money orders. Now she gave me a final phone number to call myself and as a nice gesture called it herself. It was the number for a pain clinic.
We were both exhausted by this time and I agreed to return 2 days later to give time for the fax to be answered. I did more research and found that the mystery company is owned by American Express. I called the branch manager to thank her for her work and to give her the specific phone number which is current for now.
In time the funds will be returned, it takes between six-eight weeks, and I am still waiting.
I am hopeful this will be the end of it all. However, I am prompted by those who I tell of this experience to write about it, to inform others how money orders purchased at a bank are not necessarily a product of the bank, how money orders have expiration dates, seven years if purchased at a bank and ten years if bought from the US Post Office.
I wish I had know this and not listened to Washington Mutual staff assurances - "our money orders are safe forever as long as you don't date them." It's not true... no way!