Thursday, November 17, 2011

BofA Bagged For Charging $39 Interest On $0 Balance; Insists It Was Right, But Refunds Cash Anyway "As A Courtesy" After Media Begins Asking Questions

In Jacksonville, Illinois, the Chicago Tribune reports:

  • Roger Greenwood thought he had heard of every conceivable bank fee. Then he received his September credit card bill.

  • Bank of America charged the Jacksonville, Ill., man $39.23 in interest — on a $0 balance. Greenwood was convinced it was a mistake. In August, he charged a vacation rental to his credit card, resulting in a $5,734.13 balance. Weeks later, he received $1,450 in credits from two merchants, lowering his balance to $4,284.13.

  • He paid the remainder of what he owed with an electronic transfer Sept. 6, three days before it was due, bringing his balance to zero. His statement clearly showed that between the credits and his payment, Greenwood paid off the entire $5,734.13. So why, he wondered, had he been charged interest?

  • Greenwood emailed Bank of America, and quickly received a response. An online representative agreed that between the credits and his Sept. 6 payment, Greenwood had paid his balance in full.

  • "However, we need to inform you that credits are not considered as payments on credit accounts," the representative wrote. "Therefore, the credits (of $1,450) were not considered as payments on this account, and the interest charges were applied correctly."

  • The representative told Greenwood Bank of America would not erase the $39.23 in interest. "We regret we are unable to remove the interest charges at this time," the representative said. "Therefore, this transaction will remain part of your account balance."

  • Greenwood emailed Bank of America again and received the same reply from a different representative — the $1,450 in credits weren't considered payments, and thus he was charged interest on that amount.

  • Flummoxed, Greenwood emailed What's Your Problem?

For more, see Problem Solver: Numbers don't add up on credit card charge (Jacksonville, Ill., man charged interest even though he showed zero balance).

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