five phone calls, eight people and 90 minutes, but I did it! Successfully managed to get a standing payment order cancelled at one of banks.
Way back in Sept, I walked into a branch of Capital One. Used to be Chevy Chase Bank, but that was a different lifetime. After going through a lot of effort to prove that I was me – the particular me who had had an account at the (former) bank since 1984 – I updated address, phone numbers and checked on the balance. Oh, really? Turned out to be several thousand less than what I expected. Seems like a standing payment was still running. Could they help me?
No – I had to do it myself, either over the phone or on line. Since Carmen and I were on the way to Baltimore with the Enchantment of the Seas firmly in our sights, I put it off. The August damage was done; the next blow would not land till end Nov.
Fast forward a few weeks. Ok, a couple of months. I try, once more unsuccessfully, to log in to the account. Nope – it says to call customer service. We go through the verification process and then get stuck – how much was your last deposit? No clue says I, it was several years ago. Dead silence on the other end. Seriously, says I, it was a long time ago – go look. Klicking of keys – I don’t see any deposits for the last 18 months. Yes – what I said.
Moving on, the first couple of security questions are no problem. The third one throws me for a loop – something about a Nancy someone has property in what state. No clue – I have no idea who you are talking about. That is certainly not a question I put in my profile. No – it turns out they use questions from a third party provider which are generated from details against my SSN.
Oh, goody. Someone has tried to jack my ID again. Seems like the last three times I tried to clear out garbage from the credit bureau were unsuccessful. Have you ever tried to prove that you didn’t live somewhere? Stupid people didn’t even believe deployment orders as proof that I wasn’t in Nebraska even though I was obviously in the Balkans….
After finally getting through all of this, the young man can’t get to the right area of the computer system so transfers me to a colleague.
“May I have your first and last name”
Taking a deep breath, I go through the whole thing again. No, I am calling because the system locked me out and told me to call customer service. I have a payment that needs canceling. No, I was the one who set up the original account, yes I am aware that my husband’s SSN is first on the account. That is the way that Chevy Chase did business in the 1980s, even though I was the one setting up the account and providing the direct deposit income stream. The whole thing proves too much and I get transferred to a supervisor. Who transfers me, and … you get the idea. Anyway, it is suggested that I just register over again. Ok, and get walked through the process.
Well, guess what? I no longer have access to the bill paying list. I get put on hold after explaining once again that calling the other party isn’t going to help. It is a push payment, not a pull. The bank is mailing a hard copy check, not doing an electronic payment. Oh – just a minute.
I am on hold forever it seems, then the line goes dead. I call back again and start over. Not surprisingly, things go a bit more smoothly now that I have the account number and the amount of my last deposit. However, it seems like this person can’t deal with what I need. Once again, I get transferred up the line. The new woman starts at the beginning. I stop her and ask if she can stop a payment for me. Oh, yes, no problem as long as we are more than four days out from mailing.
In less than three minutes, she has verified who I am, identified the payment and has it cancelled for good. Very properly, I am sure, she says it wasn’t her with whom I spoke in the first place so she can’t answer why the first person just didn’t cancel the payment for me.
So, a number of customer service representatives, 90 minutes and 760 words to tell you the tale.
PS. I rewarded myself with a trip to Jimmy Beans Wool