I got to experience the joy of having my credit card and identity stolen a few years ago, so when I go on the road now, I pay my expenses out of a secondary account that’s not linked to the one that pays the bills, keeps my savings, or handles any of the other financial transactions you need to conduct in modern society. I like having that firewall between me and whoever might be interested in gathering up ill gotten gains. I didn’t expect that my own credit union was going to be the one interested in gaining from my loss.
Using the fancy mobile deposit app provided by my credit union, I stood in my kitchen and deposited a check that was to cover my traveling expenses last week. The app said the deposit was successful. I saw the credit “pending” and went on about my business assuming that the deposit was actually going to take place. You see, that’s where I made my first mistake, because this morning I logged in to my account to see debits bouncing off of it like a cascade of rubber balls – each one generating it’s own $10 overdraft fee.
A stop at their local branch office and what I know so far is that without the physical paper check, I’m pretty much out of luck. It doesn’t matter of they have a record of the initial transaction. It doesn’t matter that the error was clearly on the part of their optical reader. It doesn’t matter that the CSR I spoke to could plainly see in the app that everything I was saying was both true and factual. Unless I can produce the physical check, I should feel free to go ahead and bend over.
I’ll be the first to accept partial blame in this case. I should have verified that the transaction was completed and the deposit actually made into my account. At the same time, I had hoped the local credit union would be willing to work with an account holder who has never been anything but in good standing to at a minimum roll back the service charges that would never have accrued if their fancy new app actually worked as advertised. I’d almost expect that treatment from one of the too-big-to-fail banks, but the fact is I found them easier to work with on most things.
I’ll be calling the home office tomorrow. If they can’t resolve this in at least a partially satisfactory way, I’ll probably just go ahead and end my experiment with community banking $100 poorer and far more suspect of “new and improved” capabilities.