Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Great Battle of BoA 2011

In a nutshell: I expected a mortgage payment to come out that didn't. I called BoA and a representative named William told me that it wasn't coming and if I didn't make that payment then I would most likely be beset with a plague of frogs or murdered in my sleep or something. So I made the payment with him.

Two mortgage payments came out the next day and thus began the great BoA Battle of 2011.

Let me explain. No, there's not enough time. Let me summarize. BoA would not return the second payment until they were absolutely sure that my bank would not return the funds since the second mortgage payment put us into overdraft. A copy of a statement showing clearly that the funds had posted and cleared was not adequate. After three days of conversation with various BoA representatives, it became clear that they were not going to give that money back until I managed to dredge up the corpse of John Pierpont Morgan himself, reanimate his long dead flesh and recorded a youtube of him in which he assured BoA that he done spent that money already and couldn't give it back.

Old dead JP's bank, it's worth mentioning, did me a solid and returned the money pretty quick once I got a hold of someone there.

That positive experience notwithstanding, the whole thing was scary and frustrating. At some point in my various conversations with Melody and Elizabeth at BoA, it became crystal clear that I was completely powerless in this situation. BoA has processes, by gum, and these processes are designed to make sure that BoA keeps as much of your money as possible. And more, these processes are set up so that it is impossible to do anything but rigorously adhere to them. To wit: I could talk to someone in the claims department. But I couldn't talk to someone in the return-the-money department. No one could. The person who'd actually do the wire transfer cannot be spoken to because there's a chance that some odious weakness like compassion might rear up thus separating BoA from some of my money.

A few people have sent me this story about a couple who was foreclosed upon by BoA despite having paid cash for their home. On the funny tip, some awesome judge and lawyer got together and allowed the couple to foreclose on BoA. On the less funny tip, BoA initiated foreclosure proceeding on a home they didn't hold a mortgage on. In a sensible world, the only thing you'd call that is attempted theft. Of someone's fucking HOUSE!

These banks are too big. And we are completely powerless against them. It'd be nice if some intrepid young congressman would start doing something about it, but they're too busy calling Elizabeth Warren a socialist.