Online Banking problem

naturecoastgirlApril 18, 2007

I've been stewing about this for a while. I've banked online for several years with no real problems - until recently, when money got a bit tight and I paid some bills close to their due dates. When I got late charges and looked into it I was told by my bank, and also by the credit card companies, that an electronic payment can take 10 to 14 days to process! That seems really crazy to me - why, in this age of Paypal and electronic everything, does it take this long? Is this just a total scam of consumers? Is there anything that can be done about it? Thanks for letting me vent. I'm really interested in others experiences are opinions about this.


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My online banking shows how many days I need to allow for the payment to get to the payee. It varies by payee and ranges from 1-5 days. I usually time it to get there one day early and my payments have never been late - except when the address of the payee changed. The lead time for payment with my bank has decreased over the years - not increased. They all used to be five days - now many are two.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2007 at 8:58PM
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My lead time has increased not decreased. Citibank used to be able to pay it the next day or at worst the day after, now they tell you to schedule your payments 3-5 days in advance. However 10-14 is crazy and unreasoble I would ask for a refund of all fees. Also, one trick I learned is rather than schedule the payment with my bank for credit cards, I have the issuer pull the money from my bank. They will credit me for same day over the phone payments and do not pull the money for several days. However this may only be with this particular credit card company

If you do not get a refund write to the office of the Bank President

    Bookmark   April 19, 2007 at 12:17AM
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The money transfers instantly ... they just keep you (and a few million others) waiting. Which pays well ... for them.

Not all of them operate according to that kind of nonsense.

If they can't do better than that ...

... find another bank.

ole joyful

    Bookmark   April 19, 2007 at 1:52AM
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Not all payees can take an electronic fund transfer. Those that don't, the billpay service must print and mail a paper check, which does require extra time. The due date you specify when scheduling the payment may be the date on which the service cuts and mails the check, or the date on which the payment is targeted to arrive in the payee's hands (in which case the check is cut and mailed earlier). Review the terms of service and terminology for your billpay service to determine which method is used. Also review your account statement vs. the billpay history to determine when the payments clear vs. when they are processed by the service.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2007 at 1:58AM
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when i pay bills online, i go to whoever i am paying to, not through the bank. they have alot shorter times for processing. sure, its kind of a pain going to 10 fidderent sites. but i have them all bookmarked and just go right down the line. currently, there are only 3 of our bills that dont do any kind of online payments... but most places can take payments right on their site.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2007 at 7:23AM
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Like arichard21, I pay each place on their own site. I get confirmation that it is paid on the date I specify and I do not have to worry when it gets there. I started it couple of years ago when I had several months in a row trouble with chase when they switched their software. It is somewhat pain to go to each site separately, but it is less pain than to pay late fees that are not justified or worry if they get their payment on time. Once I was even threatened by my insurance company that they will cancel my coverage, although I paid almost more than 2 weeks ahead of time. I do not need that additional stress in my life, so I pay on each individual site.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2007 at 4:40PM
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Wow - I guess I have a great online bank. My bank will research any payments that are not paid by the date they say they will and will either get the late fees removed or the bank pays. I recently had a problem with BP that was completely not the bank's fault and they went through unbelievably heroic efforts to try to help me get it corrected. It seems like it would be a real pain to go to multiple different sites to pay online.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2007 at 5:40PM
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It sounds like I need to start shopping around for a new bank. But first I am going to talk to my bank, ask them to explain their electronic payment process and tell them that I am going to change banks if they cannot make the payment happen within 3 business days. I basically like my bank and don't want the hassle of changing if I don't need to....which is probably what they are "banking" on. They do show whether the payment is electronic or by check, and I can understand the time for a paper check to clear, but not for the electronic payment.
Thank you all for your insight and advice. Joyfulguy, I think you hit the nail on the head. I'm really surprised there is not some kind of grassroots uprising about this - maybe not enough people do online banking yet.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2007 at 6:17PM
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naturecoastgirl-If your seriously considering changing banks, make sure you set up your new account before you cancel the old one. You might also consider going with a Credit Union instead of a bank.

A few links that might be useful

Items to watch when closing a checking account

Step Cautiously Into an Online Bank

3 Reasons Not to Use Online Bank Accounts

punamytsike said: "I had several months in a row trouble with chase when they switched their software."

I've had problems with Chase as well and no longer use them. I negotiated a new plan with my cell phone provider. My plan was originally $90.00 a month, I got it down to $55.00. I got my statement from Chase and it still showed the higher amount so I called to dispute the charge. Three months in a row I called the cell provider and Chase. Nothing changed.

I called Chase back and I said "I'm the owner of this card/account. My cell phone provider has been overcharging me for the past three months in a row. The amount is in dispute. I have switched my payment method to cash, I've been paying this in person each month at the store. I have receipts to prove this. Each time I call Chase I get a new account number, but the overcharge is still showing on my statement. I am going to cancel this card if you don't stop paying the cell provider.

The supervisor said as long as I was signed up for autopay, it wouldn't do any good to completely close my Chase account. I HAD to have this confirmation number to stop payment or I could be sent to collections if I didn't pay Chase (after they wrongly paid the cell provider).

In other words, as long as the cell phone provider says I owe money, the card issuer will give them whatever they ask for, even if they are BOTH wrong!

I contacted a consumer reporter at our newspaper. She was a big help. The cell phone provider gave me a refund, $100.00 for my trouble and now has a note on my account telling the employees I am a "preferred customer". Yeah right. I will NEVER use autopay again. I will also never change my phone contract without getting a copy of it in writing.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2007 at 7:35PM
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DO NOT initiate autopay FROM the VENDOR's side. In other words, do not use autopay provided by the CELL PHONE company. As long as you have an active account with them, THEY will continue to pull funds, and THEY are probably who required the confirmation number.

Do it from the BANK's billpay service provided with your checking account. It takes more attention on your part to update the payment if the amount changes, but you can cancel it ANY TIME simply by deleting the scheduled event, WITHOUT requiring ANY interaction or confirmation numbers with the cell phone company.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2007 at 10:46PM
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I've not had a problem yet with electronic transfers done by vendors. The reason I have never signed up for bill payment by the bank (we use a credit union) is because they charge for it -- not very much, but it's still a charge -- and if you do it through the vendor, it's free. I just make sure there's enough money in the account on the due dates.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2007 at 10:35AM
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dadoes-Thanks for the tip. I'll keep that in mind.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2007 at 11:37PM
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Harriet, most regular banks have free online bill pay. For an amount that is the same each month, I set it and forget it

    Bookmark   April 29, 2007 at 2:53AM
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