I was recently charged a late fee on my Bank of America card (formerly MBNA). Since I signed up for auto-pay, I was pretty surprised – I set everything up to pay more than the minimum balance every month. In fact, I almost didn’t catch the charge. For the record, it was November 1 (the payment due date).
Anyway, I called BoA customer service to see what they could do. I pointed out that because the previous payment went in on October 3rd, and the previous deadline was also the 1st, that payment should apply to the next statement. They told me that the statement “closes” on the 6th, so the payment still applied to the previous month. WTF. Also, they said that because I can control when my payment goes through, I’m responsible for that late fee. Double WTF.
Unfortunately, I was transferred to the BoA tech support people, who clarified that the system I’m using is MBNA, not BoA. And before I did, the CSR offered to give back half the late fee. When I went back to customer support, they used this against me, as if my taking half the fee was legally binding. I probably made a mistake taking it, but I don’t think it would have worked out anyway.
To sum – when BoA and MBNA finished their unholy union, BoA kept MBNA’s crappy banking software (parallel to their own), which is hardcoded to pay in time for MBNA’s due dates (as you can see in the screenshot). Since BoA has an earlier due date, MBNA’s autopay system is completely broken. In case you were wondering, I don’t have a choice – when I log in via bankofamerica.com, I still get “Bill Pay Choice”, which is MBNA’s software. Which means I have absolutely no choice about the matter.
So, word to the wise: if anyone reading this is using auto-pay on a formerly MBNA card, watch yourself. They have no problem charging you penalties for their own mistakes.
Bank of America sucks. Thank you for listening.
UPDATE: My coworker T sent me this BoingBoing link – it’s definitely not just me!