Life in the US – Bank of America

I am Bank of America (BoA) customer for more than five years. It was my first bank since I came to the US and still it is. Although they are known to hold one of the highest customer service complaints, they are very good in online banking. I pay all my bills through their online banking and it is really easy and efficient. Other things they provide in their online banking are writing electronic checks and transfer funds to other BoA customers for free.

Because fund transfer is faster than writing an electronic check, my friend decided to pay me back some money he owed me by fund transfer as we both are BoA customers. To transfer money you need the bank account and the address for the recipient. I sent him all the information but he was unable to finish the transaction because BoA could not find my name in its database as a customer! After many failure trials I decided to go to the bank to solve this problem. Here is what happened:

BoA assistant: How may I help you?

Jaraad: Someone tried to transfer money to my account but was unable to do so because the bank could not find my name!

BoA assistant: This operation is available to citizens only.

Jaraad: I am not a citizen and I use this service very frequently.

BoA assistant: He needs to have work permit social security number.

Jaraad: He does have working permit.

BoA assistant: It seems he enters your information wrong.

Jaraad: No, because I sent him all the information through email and told him to copy and paste it. I doubled check the information everything is correct.

BoA assistant: He needs to go to the bank and see the (I forgot the exact name but it has to do with getting help from there) for help.

Obviously, this assistant has no experience with such problem. Don’t you think it is stupid to accept people’s money and not allow them to do certain transactions? Anyway, because I thought he has no idea what he was talking about I decided to seek a second opinion. My next assistant was a more experienced female assistant. The conversation between us was exactly the same as the previous one.

In summary, [at least] two BoA employees don’t know that their non-US-citizen customers can use the online transfer fund!!!


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