Can I bill Chase for my time fixing their problem?
If it seems like my blog has turned into a forum for me to vent my frustrations, I apologize. I’ll make more useful posts soon to make up for it, I promise. But in the meantime…
Last month I traded in my car. This involved having the dealer pay off the remainder of my auto loan which was financed through Chase. The dealer told me it would be paid off, the account would be closed, and I wouldn’t have to worry about it any more. Sure enough, the Chase website soon showed my account as closed and paid off. Great, right?
Well, Chase decided last week to withdraw my usual monthly payment amount from my checking account despite the fact that the account was paid off. Apparently their auto-pay system isn’t smart enough to know it shouldn’t draw payments when there’s no balance. Ridiculous to be sure (in the past I’d used Audi Financial and they never had this problem), but I expected I’d just call them and they’d make it right. After all, the payment shows up on my Chase.com page, complete with a transaction number.
Unfortunately it isn’t that simple. They’re insisting that I mail or fax bank records and web site screenshots “proving” that the funds were deducted from my account, even though their own website clearly has a record of the transfer. On the phone they gave me the run around with nonsensical explanations about how they can see all my other payments including the loan pay-off transfer, but not this additional erroneous payment because of “security reasons.” They refuse to accept any of these details via e-mail or over the phone, and insist that I write a “cover letter” explaining the situation with all of my account details.
This is positively absurd. If their system didn’t clearly have a record of the transaction I’d be more forgiving, but it knows it transferred the money. It knows the date and time and has a transaction number! Apparently that number is useless, and might as well just be a made up figure, according to the server reps I’ve spoken to.
So my question is this… after two 10+ minute phone calls, the time it takes to prepare a “cover letter,” and the time and effort to find access to a fax machine (heck I don’t even have a phone line), can I bill Chase for my time? What about charging interest? They’ve obviously been generating interest on my money which they essentially stole from my account. Has anyone had experience with situations like this? Is there any viable recourse that will make up for my lost time and money while also perhaps encouraging Chase to get their act together?